“Minimally invasive” is a term used to describe surgeries that provide an alternative to traditional surgery. When it comes to heart surgery, this means smaller incisions that avoid more complex operations such as open-heart surgery.


Heart surgeons at CHI St. Vincent Heart Institute perform many minimally invasive procedures, including mitral or aortic valve repair and replacement, coronary artery bypass grafting, and ventricular assist device implantation, among others. Some of these procedures are even performed with robotic surgical instruments.


If you’re wondering what minimally invasive surgery means for patients, here are some of the biggest benefits of these procedures:

 • Less pain

 • Less scarring

 • Shorter hospital stay

 • Lower risk of infection

 • Lower risk of bleeding

 • Shorter recovery time


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Around the OR

Heart surgeons at CHI St. Vincent Heart Institute are a dedicated bunch. When asked to reflect on their work, here are some of the thoughts they had:

“If we agree together, the patient and I and their family, to do an operation, then it’s a team. It’s a covenant. My pledge is to do the very best operation I can.”

— Michael Bauer, MD


“When patients come to see me they have lots of questions. I am a firm believer in spending all the time that’s necessary for patients to understand what’s going on and what their options are so they can make the best decision.”

— Thurston Bauer, MD


“One of our visions at CHI St. Vincent in Little Rock, Arkansas, is to provide state-of-the-art care for the people in our community and in our state.”

— Frederick Meadors, MD


“A lot of what I do is minimally invasive surgery. We do a lot of complex heart surgeries at CHI St. Vincent that a lot of places don’t or won’t do. When it’s done right, it’s a work of art.”

— Thomas Rayburn, MD


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