How is a pericardiectomy performed?
Pericardiectomy is performed through a median sternotomy, an incision through the breastbone (sternum) in the middle front part of the ribs that allows the surgeon to reach the heart. The surgeon will remove the pericardium from the heart, wire the breastbone and ribs back together and close the incision with stitches. Other surgeons may use a thoracotomy approach.
A pericardiectomy cannot safely be done minimally invasively.