May 24, 2024
Search
Close this search box.
Search
Close this search box.
May 24, 2024
Search
Close this search box.

Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

SAR HS Bio Challenge Students Attend Surgery

Twenty-one students who participated in the Bio Challenge last summer were privileged to attend open heart Surgery through the Liberty Science Center’s Cardiac Classroom Live program along with their biology teacher, Tobie Brandriss.

The students were fortunate to see a double coronary artery bypass operation on a 65-year-old man who had serious cardiovascular disease and much blockage of the coronary vessels supplying his heart—partially due to his DNA and a preponderance of heart disease in his family, as well as due to his diet and lack of exercise. The patient’s radial arteries would be used in the replacement. The surgeon explained that the success of the surgery would be largely dependent on his lifestyle changes after the surgery.

The surgery was video-cast live on a large screen from Morristown Hospital. The students were introduced to the surgeon, the perfusionist—who was in charge of operating the heart lung machine—the physician’s assistant and the nurses who assisted in the operation.

The students watched the operation from the time the heart was exposed to view, then cooled and stopped as the blood was rerouted through the heart lung machine. They watched as the radial arteries from the arm were sewn in to replace two blocked coronary arteries. They then saw the heartbeat restored and the chest cavity and skin closed up—all in under two hours!

“I found it amazing that the doctors were so relaxed and not stressed even though they were literally cutting and changing a person’s inner body,” said Noa H. “They were all incredibly fast and efficient.”

The students asked questions of the surgeon and the medical team who showed them up close the procedures they were performing, as the camera zoomed in. “It was amazing to see how the doctors flawlessly worked together and performed the surgery so well, while also answering questions and talking to the audience,” said Emma S. In addition the staff at the Liberty Science center passed around the instruments and sutures being used in the operation for the students to hold up close.

Attendance at the surgery was the culminating event for the students who had gone beyond their course-work in ninth grade biology to participate in the Biology Challenge option. As part of the challenge option they read and wrote papers analyzing the biography/autobiography of a scientist whose research we had studied in the course.

“I am considering pursuing a career in medicine and this surgery provided me with a keen insight into one of the most hands-on forms of medicine there is,” said David I. “Observing the intricacies and careful execution the entire surgical team performed left me in shock and admiration.”

Leave a Comment

Most Popular Articles