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If you've been scheduled for a Leg Bypass operation, you probably have some questions. Our guide offers the answers you're looking for, and helps you prepare for your operation.
A large blood vessel (artery) in your leg has become narrowed or blocked, so less blood and oxygen is getting to the tissues in that leg and foot. An operation is needed to restore blood flow to your leg and foot. Without the operation, your symptoms can become worse. Your leg may become numb or weak. You may develop infection or gangrene, and be at risk of losing your leg.
A leg bypass operation creates a new tube for blood to flow to your leg and foot, bypassing (avoiding) the section of the artery that is narrow or blocked. The new tube is called a graft. A graft can be a vein from your leg or arm (if suitable) or a flexible, artificial tube.
What types of operations can help?Your femoral artery brings blood to your leg, foot and toes. Two types of an operation on this artery can help improve blood flow in the legs:
A leg bypass can be done in two ways:
To decide what type of operation is best for you, your surgeon will assess your symptoms, do a physical examination and review your medical history and the results of your tests.
How long you stay in hospital will depend on the type of operation you had and how well you are recovering. The usual hospital stay is 5 to 7 days.