As with traditional methods, surgeons bypass diseased sections of coronary arteries by taking grafts of healthy blood vessels from other parts of the body. With robot-assisted surgery, doctors choose from two main techniques:
1) MIDCAB (minimally invasive direct coronary artery bypass grafting). In these procedures, the surgeon makes several smaller incisions (compared with the size of an open-chest procedure)exposing only the sections of the arteries that require grafts, instead of the entire heart. Internal mammary arteries are the most common grafts used because they can be kept intact due to their proximity to coronary arteries and can be accessed through the primary incision.
2) TECAB (totally endoscopic coronary artery bypass grafting). This entire procedure is done through three ports accessed through three small incisions in the chest.