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What is a Cardiovascular Surgeon?
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What is a Cardiovascular Surgeon?
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Cardiovascular surgeons operate on your heart and blood vessels to repair damage caused by diseases or disorders of the cardiovascular system. Texas Heart Institute cardiovascular surgeons are listed in the professional staff directory.

Many times, a diagnosis of heart disease begins with your primary care doctor, who refers you to a cardiologist. If your cardiologist decides that you need surgery, he or she refers you to a cardiovascular surgeon, who becomes a new member of your heart-health team. (Even after heart surgery, you remain under the care of your cardiologist.)

Cardiovascular surgeons perform many different types of operations, including heart valve repair and replacement, heart defect repair, coronary artery bypass, aneurysm repair, transmyocardial laser revascularization, and heart transplantation. They also perform operations on the blood vessels in your body, including the aorta—the body’s main blood supplier. Heart surgery today may also include the use or implantation of ventricular assist devices (VADs), mechanical devices that “assist” the failing heart by helping it pump blood throughout the body.

To learn about other members of the surgical team, see cardiovascular anesthesiologist and perfusionist.

Cardiovascular surgeons at the Texas Heart Institute at St. Luke's Episcopal Hospital lead research efforts to continually advance the treatment of heart and vascular diseases. For more details, see Summary of Research, and for examples of our historic innovations, see Surgical Innovations.

Patient Care

Texas Heart Institute surgeons have performed more than 100,000 open heart operations, more than any other center in the world. Learn more about patient care.


Updated December 2013
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Texas Heart Institute Heart Information Center
Through this community outreach program, staff members of the Texas Heart Institute (THI) provide educational information related to the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of cardiovascular disease. It is not the intention of THI to provide specific medical advice, but rather to provide users with information to better understand their health and their diagnosed disorders. Specific medical advice will not be provided and THI urges you to visit a qualified physician for diagnosis and for answers to your questions.
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