DEAR DOCTOR K: When a patient has one or more blocked coronary arteries, how does a doctor decide whether to perform an angioplasty or bypass surgery?
DEAR READER: Let me explain how your heart works before I answer your question. Your heart doesn't just pump blood -- it needs blood to survive. Every organ in your body needs a constant energy supply. And every organ is making waste material and needs a "garbage collector" to take the waste away. Both the energy supply and the waste removal come from the blood that constantly runs through every organ.