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heart-surgery-in-singapore Cardiac surgery is a necessary and complex medical treatment that has the potential to save lives and enhance the quality of life for people suffering from severe cardiac problems. Singapore has emerged as a top location for cardiac surgery, thanks to its advanced medical facilities, talented doctors, and high-quality of care. This article looks into numerous elements of heart surgery in Singapore, offering a complete guidance to anyone considering or preparing for this major medical procedure.

Different Types of Heart Surgery in Singapore

Heart surgery in Singapore consists of a number of modern treatments designed to treat specific cardiac diseases. Singapore is well-known for its cardiac care expertise, which is backed up by cutting-edge technology and highly competent surgical teams. Here’s a closer look at the most popular forms of heart surgery performed in the region:
  1. Coronary Artery Bypass Grafting (CABG): One of the most regular and crucial operations, CABG helps increase blood flow to the heart. Surgeons in Singapore execute this procedure by grafting a healthy blood artery from another part of the body onto the heart to bypass blocked or constricted coronary arteries. This treatment is often recommended for patients with significant coronary artery disease and is a cornerstone of cardiac surgery in Singapore.
  2. Heart Valve Repair or Replacement: Valve repair or replacement surgery addresses damaged or malfunctioning heart valves. Repairing a valve may entail changing the original valve to ensure adequate operation, whereas replacement entails removing the damaged valve and replacing it with a new one, either mechanical or biological. This form of heart surgery in Singapore restores patients’ normal valve function, hence increasing their overall cardiac efficiency and quality of life.
  3. Aortic Aneurysm Repair: An aortic aneurysm is an irregular protrusion in the aorta’s wall that might rupture if left untreated. Depending on the aneurysm’s size and location, as well as the patient’s overall condition, surgeons in Singapore may choose standard open surgery or a less invasive endovascular technique to repair it.
  4. Arrhythmia Surgery: Arrhythmia surgery, such as the Maze technique, is available to people who have severe arrhythmias or abnormal heartbeats. This surgical technique includes making precise incisions in the heart tissue to form scar patterns that successfully reroute electrical impulses, restoring normal rhythm. Heart surgery in Singapore uses cutting-edge procedures to assure successful outcomes for patients with complicated arrhythmias.
  5. Heart Transplant: Heart transplants are reserved for individuals with end-stage heart failure who have exhausted all other therapy options. This operation replaces a failing heart with a healthy heart from a deceased donor. Singapore’s medical centers have the required facilities and experience to perform these difficult transplants, giving patients suffering from severe heart diseases a fresh lease on life.
  6. Congenital Heart Surgery: Singapore also specializes in procedures for congenital heart abnormalities, which occur from birth. These methods differ greatly based on the kind and severity of the problem. Skilled surgeons in Singapore may conduct difficult procedures to fix congenital anomalies, typically with outstanding results, even in pediatric patients.
These types of heart surgery in Singapore highlight the country’s dedication to delivering comprehensive, cutting-edge care for a wide spectrum of cardiac diseases. With continued developments in medical technology and surgical techniques, the prognosis for patients undergoing heart surgery is improving, highlighting Singapore’s position as a leading center for cardiac treatment.

When is Heart Surgery Needed?

Heart surgery is a necessary intervention when alternative less invasive treatments, such as medication or minimally invasive procedures, do not properly address a patient’s heart disease. In Singapore, the decision to continue with heart surgery is made after a thorough evaluation by a multidisciplinary team of doctors, which ensures that all possible treatment options have been considered. Here’s a more detailed look at the diseases that may require cardiac surgery in Singapore:

1. Severe Coronary Artery Disease

When coronary artery disease becomes too advanced to be adequately managed with angioplasty or drugs, heart surgery in Singapore, such as Coronary Artery Bypass Grafting (CABG), may be advised. This form of surgery aims to improve blood flow to the heart, relieving symptoms and lowering the risk of heart attack.

2. Heart Valve Disease

Heart surgery may be required when valve dysfunction causes severe symptoms or increases the risk of heart failure. Procedures like valve repair or replacement are used to restore normal valve function and improve the patient’s quality of life. Heart surgery in Singapore for valve dysfunction uses both mechanical and biological replacements, depending on the patient’s individual demands and conditions.

3. Aortic Aneurysms

Surgery is required for aortic aneurysms that are at high risk of rupture. In Singapore, physicians may choose standard open surgery or a less invasive endovascular approach to treat the aneurysm, thereby avoiding potentially fatal consequences.

4. Life-Threatening Arrhythmias

When arrhythmias are severe and cannot be controlled with drugs or other treatments, heart surgery in Singapore, such as the Maze technique, may be used. This operation seeks to form scar tissue within the heart, which helps regulate electrical impulses and restores a regular heartbeat.

5. End-stage Heart Failure

In cases of end-stage heart failure where other treatments have failed, a heart transplant may be the only viable alternative. Heart transplant surgery in Singapore is performed with high levels of knowledge and precision, providing patients with the opportunity to live longer and with a higher quality of life.

6. Complex Congenital Heart Defects

Certain complicated congenital cardiac problems necessitate surgical treatment so that the patient can enjoy a healthy life. These surgeries are meticulously planned and carried out by professional cardiac surgeons in Singapore, who are experienced in dealing with the unique problems posed by congenital disorders. Decisions about heart surgery in Singapore are not taken lightly. A team of specialists, including cardiologists and cardiac surgeons, conducts in-depth conversations and examinations of the patient’s health, as well as the potential benefits and dangers of surgery. This collaborative approach ensures that each patient receives the most appropriate and tailored treatment plan possible, showing Singapore’s dedication to excellence in cardiac care.

The Expert Teams Behind Heart Surgery in Singapore

Heart surgery in Singapore is performed by highly competent cardiothoracic surgeons who specialize in heart, lung, and other thoracic (chest) surgical operations. These surgeons have had rigorous and prolonged training, which typically involves medical school, a general surgery residency, and a specific fellowship in cardiothoracic surgery. This training provides them with the skills needed to execute difficult surgeries with accuracy and compassion. In Singapore, the success of heart surgery is dependent not only on the skills of cardiothoracic surgeons, but also on the coordinated efforts of a multidisciplinary team. This team improves the quality and safety of heart surgery. It includes:
  • Cardiologists: These specialists are responsible for diagnosing and treating cardiac diseases, collaborating closely with surgeons to arrange appropriate surgical treatments.
  • Anesthesiologists: As with any surgical treatment, anesthesiologists in Singapore are in charge of managing anesthesia during heart surgery. They ensure that patients are pain-free and stable throughout the procedure.
  • Perfusionists: Many types of heart surgery require temporarily stopping the heart. Perfusionists are essential because they operate the heart-lung machine, which ensures circulation and oxygenation throughout this period.
  • Nurses and Technicians: A team of specialized nurses and technicians provides critical support in the operating room. They assist with surgical procedures and play an important role in postoperative care, ensuring that patients receive the care they need to recover effectively.
The teamwork of these professionals during cardiac surgery in Singapore guarantees that patients receive comprehensive treatment from preoperative to recovery. This collaboration is at the heart of Singapore’s reputation for high-quality cardiac care, which has made it a popular destination for heart surgery and other medical treatments. The dedication to excellence and constant advancement in procedures and technology helps to push the limits of what is possible in cardiac care, resulting in better results for patients undergoing heart surgery in Singapore.

How Much Does Heart Surgery Cost in Singapore?

Heart surgery costs in Singapore vary based on the type of surgery, procedure complexity, hospital, and the patient’s overall health. The usual cost ranges from SGD 30,000 to SGD 80,000 or more. For example:
  • CABG: SGD 30,000-SGD 50,000.
  • Heart Valve Replacement: SGD 40,000 – SGD 70,000.
  • Heart Transplant: SGD 150,000 to SGD 250,000
These expenses often include preoperative diagnostics, the surgical surgery itself, hospitalization, and after care. Many hospitals in Singapore offer packages that include a comprehensive cost estimate, which can assist patients organize their budget.

Can Cardiology Clinics in Singapore Perform Heart Surgery?

While cardiology clinics in Singapore offer a variety of diagnostic and treatment options for heart diseases, heart surgery is usually performed in hospitals with superior surgical facilities and critical care units. However, certain specialized cardiac centers and clinics are associated with hospitals and can help with the entire procedure, from diagnosis to surgery and post-operative care.

The Harley Street Heart & Vascular Centre

The Harley Street Heart & Vascular Centre is a premier cardiology clinic in Singapore, noted for providing comprehensive cardiac care. While the clinic does not perform cardiac procedures, it collaborates with premier institutions to guarantee that patients receive comprehensive and coordinated care. The facility provides modern diagnostic services, pre-surgical examinations, and postoperative follow-up, ensuring that patients are well-prepared and supported throughout their surgical experience.

How to Prepare for Heart Surgery in Singapore

Preparing for heart surgery entails several critical steps to achieve the best possible results. Here’s a guide to help you prepare:

Medical Evaluation

  • Consultation: Meet with your cardiologist and cardiothoracic surgeon to discuss the procedure’s risks and benefits.
  • Tests: Preoperative testing include blood tests, chest X-rays, echocardiograms, and angiograms.

Lifestyle Adjustments

  • Medications: Always follow your doctor’s directions for medicines. Some drugs may need to be discontinued or changed before surgery.
  • Diet and Exercise: Eat a nutritious diet and indulge in light exercise as directed by your healthcare practitioner.

Mental and Emotional Preparation

  • Counseling: If you are anxious or concerned about the procedure, consider seeking counseling or joining a support group.
  • Support System: Plan for family or friends to support you before, during, and after surgery.

Practical Arrangements

  • Hospital Stay: Pack basics for your hospital stay, such as comfortable clothing, personal accessories, and any required paperwork.
  • Post-Surgery Care: Plan your recuperation period, including arranging for home care if necessary.

Recovery and Continuing Care

Recovery following cardiac surgery varies according on the type of surgery and the particular patient. Here are some broad principles for rehabilitation and continued care:

Immediate Postoperative Care

  • ICU Stay: Typically, patients spend the first 24-48 hours in the intensive care unit (ICU) for close monitoring.
  • Hospital Stay: The average hospital stay lasts 5 to 10 days, depending on the treatment and recuperation progress.

At-Home Recovery

  • Rest and Activity: Gradually raise your activity levels as recommended by your healthcare provider. Avoid vigorous activities until your doctor approves.
  • Medications: Continue to take your recommended drugs to relieve pain, prevent infection, and support heart function.
  • Follow-Up Appointments: Make every scheduled follow-up visit to assess your progress and discuss any issues.

Long-Term Care

  • Cardiac Rehabilitation: Join a cardiac rehabilitation program to improve your heart health and general fitness.
  • Lifestyle Adjustments: Make heart-healthy adjustments, such as eating a balanced diet, exercising regularly, and managing stress.
  • Ongoing Monitoring: Schedule regular check-ups with your cardiologist to monitor heart function and prevent potential issues.

Frequently Asked Questions about Heart Surgery in Singapore

1. What are the risks of heart surgery?

Heart surgery, like any other major surgical treatment, has risks such as infection, hemorrhage, stroke, heart attack, and anesthesia-related problems. Your surgeon will go over these risks with you in detail.

2. How long does it take to recover from heart surgery?

Recovery time varies according to the type of surgery and specific patient characteristics. Most patients can resume normal activities after 6 to 12 weeks, however, complete recovery may take many months.

3. Can foreigners get heart surgery in Singapore?

Yes, Singapore is a popular spot for medical tourism, particularly heart surgery. Many hospitals provide extensive packages to international patients, which include aid with travel and lodging accommodations.

4. Is heart surgery covered by insurance in Singapore?

Your insurance plan determines how much coverage you have for heart surgery. It is best to check with your insurance carrier about the scope of coverage and any out-of-pocket charges.

5. What should I expect during my hospital stay for heart surgery?

During your hospital stay, you will be cared for around the clock by a multidisciplinary team. The stay usually includes preoperative preparation, the surgical procedure, and postoperative monitoring and care.

6. Are there minimally invasive options for heart surgery?

Yes, some cardiac procedures can be performed utilizing minimally invasive techniques, which have smaller incisions and need less recovery time. Your surgeon will decide whether you are a candidate for these operations.

7. How do I choose the best hospital for heart surgery in Singapore?

When selecting a hospital, consider the facility’s reputation, the surgical team’s experience, the availability of advanced medical technology, and patient feedback. Consulting with your cardiologist can also help you make your decision.


To summarize, heart surgery in Singapore is performed with high levels of care, innovative technology, and competent medical experts. Patients can approach this crucial medical intervention with confidence if they understand the many types of heart surgery, when they are required, who does them, and how to prepare and recuperate. Whether you are a local or an overseas patient, Singapore provides a strong and supportive environment for heart surgery, resulting in the best potential outcomes. If you are experiencing symptoms of heart disease or want to check your heart’s health, visit the Harley Street Heart and Vascular Centre. You can also call us at +65 6235 5300 to connect with one of our recommended heart doctors. Written by: Dr Michael MacDonald MB ChB, BSc (Hons), MRCP (UK), MD (Research), FESC (Europe).  Dr MacDonald was trained in the UK and is a senior Consultant Cardiologist.

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