How Long Is Open Heart Surgery Recovery?

Posted by Heart Hugger on Jan 6, 2020 8:17:17 AM


There are all kinds of things to learn, know, and understand before open-heart surgery. Perhaps one of the most important is how long your recovery might take, but the truth is that there's no single answer. Read on to find out how to calculate open-heart surgery recovery time.

Recovery Variables

When it comes to preparing for open-heart surgery, most patients have a lot of questions, especially about recovery. However, recovery time isn't static; it's different for every patient, and a lot of things need to be factored in before you can get an accurate estimate.

Here are a few things to consider when asking about your recovery time.

Surgery specifics

Open heart surgery recovery, as a general rule, will take at least eight weeks. However, depending on precisely what needs to be done and how your doctor approaches the procedure, your recovery time may be longer.


Patient age has a lot to do with recovery time. The older you get, the less efficient your body is at healing itself. This doesn't mean you won't heal, but it does mean that you'll need to be patient with your body after something as serious as open-heart surgery.


Your overall condition--including any other health problems, like diabetes--will impact your recovery time after open-heart surgery. Again, you don't have to be in perfect health to recover from this procedure; however, if, for example, you smoke, you'll notice slower healing of your wound and a higher chance of scarring.


Never believe that you are just a "passenger" in your healing journey. If you are an active, dedicated participant (for example, following your doctor's recommendations and taking steps to improve your comfort) your recovery time will be shorter, easier, and safer.

Standard Recovery Times

Your doctors will tell you everything you need to know about recovery times, so be sure to talk with them if you have specific questions about recovery. However, in general you can expect recovery to last between 6 weeks to 6 months, and you can expect to gradually feel better within that spectrum. Fatigue and chest pain -- some of the most common issues during heart surgery recovery -- can take several weeks to clear up, but there are ways to function better during that process. 

Do you want to learn more about heart surgery, recovery times, and how to be an active participant in your healing? Contact us today for all the help you need.

Heart Hugger

Written by Heart Hugger

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