• Kyriakos Anastasiadis
  • Polychronis Antonitsis
  • Helena Argiriadou


The development of the heart–lung machine by John Gibbon at the University of Minnesota revolutionised cardiac surgery. The so-called ever after cardiopulmonary bypass (CPB) or extracorporeal circulation (ECC) was first utilised in 1953 to repair a large atrial septal defect in an 18-year-old woman (Fig. 1.1) [1]. Multiple improvements in CPB technology established the use of ECC with aortic cross-clamping and cardioplegic arrest of the heart as the gold standard technique in cardiac surgery. Regarding epicardial surgery, such as the coronary artery bypass grafting (CABG) procedures, CPB provides optimal conditions (a bloodless field and an arrested heart) for complete and accurate myocardial revascularisation, while in intracardiac procedures, such as valve surgery or repair of structural defects, CPB is considered mandatory. Experience accumulated for almost 6 decades through a huge number of cardiac procedures performed under ECC worldwide has contributed to improved results, despite the increasing percentage of elderly and high-risk patients [2], and established a high level of quality of modern heart surgery over the years.


Coronary Artery Bypass Grafting Centrifugal Pump Postoperative Atrial Fibrillation Cardioplegic Arrest Prime Volume 
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Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg 2013

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kyriakos Anastasiadis
    • 1
  • Polychronis Antonitsis
    • 1
  • Helena Argiriadou
    • 1
  1. 1.Department of Cardiothoracic SurgeryAHEPA University Hospital Aristotle University of ThessalonikiThessalonikiGreece

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