Table 4

Top 10 priority research questions for adult heart surgery

1How does a patient quality of life (QOL) change (eg, disability-free survival) following heart surgery and what factors are associated with this?
2How can we address frailty and improve the management of frail patients in heart surgery?
3How can we improve the outcomes of heart surgery patients with chronic conditions (obesity, diabetes, hypertension, renal failure, autoimmune diseases, and so on)?
4Does prehabilitation (a programme of nutritional, exercise and psychological interventions before surgery) benefit heart surgery patients?
5When should heart valve intervention occur for patients without symptoms?
6How does minimally invasive heart surgery compare to traditional open surgery?
7How do we minimise damage to organs from heart-lung machine/heart surgery (heart, kidney, lung, brain and gut)?
8Can we use 3D bioprinting or stem cell technology to create living tissues (heart valves/heart) and repair failing hearts (myocardial regeneration)?
9What are the most effective ways of preventing and treating postoperative atrial fibrillation?
10How do we reduce and manage infections after heart surgery including surgical site/sternal wound infection and pneumonia?