Question: Why do I have to continue my medications after bypass surgery? Don't I have new vessels now?

Answer: This is a very, very important question to think about carefully and to understand.

What has been done for you with bypass surgery is to save your life, to help you to feel better, to reduce your symptoms and eliminate them, chest pain, shortness of breath, and very, very importantly, to prolong your life expectancy.

But sadly, what you have is coronary artery disease. This is a disease, and it is progressive. I, as a surgeon, or your doctor who's taking care of you, at this point in time cannot do anything that directly impacts on the disease.

We cannot cure this disease.

And so, it is so very, very important that you continue to listen to your doctor and be certain that you take the medicines that are prescribed for you, because those medicines are involved with helping to reduce your blood pressure, to help you with your cholesterol, to control your diabetes, all of which impact on the rate of progression of your disease.

So although we cannot cure the disease, what we can do is prevent the life-threatening consequences, and we can also slow down how quickly that disease continues. So it's a critically important item for you to maintain your medical regimen.

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