Department of Cardiac Surgery
About our pediatric cardiac surgeons
"Our program is unique—not only in the volume of surgeries that we perform, but more importantly, from the standpoint of innovation and the development of new techniques to manage complex cases."
Pedro del Nido, MD, Chairman, Cardiac Surgery
Boston Children's Hospital has been at the forefront of pediatric heart surgery since 1938 when Robert Gross, MD, performed the first operation to correct a congenital heart defect. In the years since that groundbreaking procedure, our Cardiac Surgery department has grown to become the largest in the United States and one of the most specialized in the world.
Our cardiac surgery team is made up of six pediatric cardiac surgeons who are dedicated exclusively to patients with congenital heart disease and other rare heart conditions. Having six cardiac surgeons means we can treat more children, and this experience translates to better outcomes. It also means that our surgeons can sub-specialize and push the boundaries of what was previously possible in each of their areas.
Our collaborative approach
Your child’s care team will be made up of cardiac surgeons, cardiologists, cardiac anesthesiologists, cardiovascular nurses and imaging technicians—all of whom are specifically trained in treating pediatric heart conditions.
We work in collaboration with specialists from other departments and divisions at Children’s, and our multi-disciplinary approach ensures the highest quality of care.
As a team, this network of specialists forms a comprehensive care plan that accounts for the many aspects of your child’s health that is affected when she has a heart condition.
From your first visit, you’ll work with a team of professionals who are committed to supporting all of your family’s medical, physical and emotional needs. Each step we take is focused on making your family’s experience as manageable as possible.
Cardiac care over a lifetime
Twenty years ago, our primary concern was whether a baby or child would survive the complex procedures we performed. Pediatric heart surgery was still in its infancy. Today that has changed; the majority of children do extremely well. What we focus on now is how to make sure the child is doing well in her 20s and 40s, and 50s, 60s and 70s. Our goal is for the child to lead a long normal life, and we plan our clinical management of the child over many decades.