Department of Cardiac Surgery

At the Department of Cardiac Surgery at Boston Children’s Hospital, our mission is to relentlessly raise the standards of care for patients with congenital heart disease.

Our group of 12 cardiac surgeons is dedicated to treating patients with congenital heart disease and other rare heart conditions. Each year, our surgeons perform more than 1,000 surgeries, on both children and adults. This depth of experience translates to better outcomes. It also means that our surgeons can specialize in different areas of cardiac surgery and push the boundaries of what was previously possible in each of their areas.

The Department of Cardiac Surgery at Boston Children’s has been at the forefront of pediatric heart surgery since 1938, when our department performed the first operation to correct a congenital heart defect.

In the years since that groundbreaking procedure, our department has grown to become the largest in the United States, and includes 11 specific surgical programs. We routinely operate on children that are deemed too complex for other heart centers, while still achieving some of the best success rates in the world.

Collaborating with every expert to deliver the best care

From your first visit through surgery, you’ll work with a team of professionals who are committed to supporting you child’s medical, physical and emotional needs — making your family’s experience as manageable as possible.

We work in collaboration with other specialists and programs within the Benderson Family Heart Center as well as other departments throughout Boston Children’s. We also coordinate with each patient’s local pediatrician or heart specialist to ensure continuity of care for even the most complex cases.

Read the transcript in English

Hi, my name is Jacqui O’Brien and I’m a case coordinator in cardiac surgery at Boston Children’s Hospital. To request a second opinion from our surgeons you can reach out to a surgeon, case coordinator, or through the Heart Center Second Opinion website through the link below. One of our case coordinators will respond to you within two business days to review the process. We will ask you to please send you or your child’s most recent clinical information, including reports and moving images. All reports can be emailed directly to your case coordinator. If you are unable to upload the images electronically, they can be mailed. Once we review all the necessary information, it will be reviewed by one of our surgeons and a formal letter will be sent to you through email including their assessment and recommendations. If after reviewing the letter you have further questions, our surgeons will remain available to answer them.

Hi, I’m Sue-Mei Portugues. I’m a case coordinator at cardiac surgery at Boston Children Hospital. If you would like to schedule a surgery in our hospital all you need to do is contact one of our surgeons or let one of us know. The doctors will prepare all of the documentation needed for the scheduling. Once that is done, our scheduling team will contact you. If you have any questions regarding the insurance, we will put you in contact with our national or international finance managers. If you have other questions, we will guide you to the correct resources that will be able to assist you. We also assist international families by providing them the documentation that they need to request a medical visa to enter the United States. With the scheduling, we will send you an email with all the options for housing. That includes our patient family housing, Ronald McDonald’s, hotels, and foundations that assist families that come here for medical care.

Hi, my name is Sihan Chen, a case coordinator of cardiac surgery department of Boston Children’s Hospital. Your case coordinator will continue help you and guide you after you arrive at the hospital. If you’d like, your case coordinator is happy to meet with you in the hospital lobby before you first appointment, give you a short tour of the hospital, show you where your appointments are, and provide you with the important information to navigate through the hospital. If need any help during your stay, your case coordinator will remain available to you and guide you to right resources. If you’d like, your case coordinator will give you a discharge package with all the medical reports and images to bring home.

Read the transcript in Spanish

Hola, me llamo Jacqui O’Brien y soy coordinadora de casos de cirugía cardíaca en Boston Children’s Hospital. Para pedir una segunda opinión a nuestros cirujanos, pueden comunicarse con uno de ellos, con un coordinador, o pueden visitar la página web del Heart Center siguiendo el vínculo de más abajo. Un coordinador les contestará en dos días laborables para repasar el proceso. Les pediremos que envíen la información clínica más reciente de su niño, incluyendo informes y estudios por imágenes. Pueden enviarla directamente a su coordinador del caso. Si no pueden subir las imágenes electrónicamente, las pueden enviar por correo. Cuando tengamos toda la información necesaria, uno de nuestros cirujanos la repasará y les enviará una carta formal, por correo electrónico, con su evaluación y sus recomendaciones. Si después de leer la carta tienen preguntas, un cirujano las podrán contestar.

Hola, me llamo Sue-Mei Portugues. Soy coordinadora de casos de cirugía cardíaca en Boston Children’s Hospital. Para programar una operación aquí, simplemente deben comunicarse con uno de nuestros cirujanos o con un coordinador. Los médicos reunirán toda la documentación necesaria para programar una cita. Luego, nuestro equipo se comunicará con ustedes. Si tienen preguntas sobre el seguro, los pondremos en contacto con un representante financiero para pacientes locales o internacionales. Si tienen otras preguntas, los dirigiremos a recursos que puedan ayudarles. También ayudamos a las familias del extranjero facilitándoles la documentación necesaria para conseguir una visa médica a Estados Unidos. Junto con la cita, les enviaremos un mensaje con información de alojamiento, como nuestro hogar para pacientes, Ronald McDonald House, hoteles y fundaciones que ayudan a familias que vienen a recibir atención médica.

Hola, me llamo Sihan Chen y coordino casos de cirugía cardíaca en Boston Children’s Hospital. Seguiré ayudándoles y sirviéndoles de guía ir cuando lleguen al hospital. Si lo desean, un coordinador puede recibirlos en la entrada antes de la primera cita, llevarlos a recorrer el hospital, mostrarles dónde tendrán las citas y darles información importante para que se orienten en el hospital. Si necesitan ayuda durante su estancia, el coordinador seguirá disponible para dirigirlos a los recursos necesarios. Además, el coordinador puede darles un paquete de alta con todos los informes y estudios médicos.

Read the transcript in Simplified Chinese

大家好,我叫Jacqui O'Brien, 是波士顿儿童医院心外科病例协调员。 要向我们的外科医生征求第二意见,您可以联系外科医生、病例协调员 或访问心脏中心第二意见网站(链接见下)。 我们的病例协调员 会在两个工作日内回复并审查流程。 我们要求您发送您或您孩子的 最新临床信息, 包括报告和动态图像。 所有报告都可以通过电子邮件直接发送给您的病例协调员。 如果您无法通过电子方式上传图像, 也可以邮寄。 我们收到所有必要信息后, 一位外科医生会审查这些信息, 您会收到一封正式电子邮件, 其中包括医生的评估和建议。 如果您在查看信件后还有其他疑问, 外科医生可以随时回答您的疑问。

大家好,我叫Sue-Mei Portugues, 是波士顿儿童医院心外科 病例协调员。 如果您希望在我们医院安排手术, 您只需 与我们的一位外科医生联系 或告诉我们。 医生会准备安排手术所需的所有文件。 随后,我们的安排团队会与您联系。 如果您对保险有任何疑问, 我们会帮助您与我们的全国或国际财务经理联系。 如果您还有其他疑问, 我们会告诉您合适的资源, 以便为您提供帮助。 我们还协助国际家庭, 向他们提供所需的文件, 以便申请进入美国所需的医疗签证。 在安排手术的同时,我们会向您发送一封电子邮件, 其中包含各种住宿选择, 例如我们的患者家庭住房、 Ronald McDonald House和多家酒店, 以及帮助来我们这里就医的家庭的基金会。

大家好,我叫Sihan Chen, 是波士顿儿童医院心外科病例协调员。 您的病例协调员会在您到达医院后 继续为您提供帮助和指导。 如果您愿意, 您的病例协调员会很高兴 在您首次看医生之前在医院大厅里与您见面, 带您参观一下医院, 告诉您在哪里看医生, 并为您提供有关医院布局的重要信息。 如果您在住院期间需要任何帮助, 您的病例协调员会随时为您提供帮助, 指导您找到合适的资源。 如果您愿意, 您的病例协调员在您出院时会给您一个文件包, 其中包含您的所有医疗报告和图像,以便您带回家。

Boston Children

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. Meet our team

Our depth of experience in cardiac surgery

Reducing recovery time and improving outcomes

Our surgical team has adopted Enhanced Recovery After Cardiac Surgery (ERAS Cardiac) practices. ERAS Cardiac is an initiative in surgical care designed to achieve early recovery for patients. This approach uses evidence-based guidelines to quicken recovery, reduce complications, decrease time in the hospital, and improve patient and family satisfaction.

Outstanding outcomes

Despite treating some of the most complex pediatric heart conditions in the world, the Department of Cardiac Surgery at Boston Children's has some of the best success rates. Data taken from the Society for Thoracic Surgeons (STS) Congenital Heart Surgery Database.


Four-year case volume

Data for surgery performed: July 2015 - June 2019


Four-year survival Comparison

Data for surgery performed: July 2015 - June 2019

Length of stay

Four-year post-op length of stay

See our post-op length of stay comparison based on benchmark operations, or on STAT complexity:

Data for surgery performed: July 2015 - June 2019

Data for surgery performed: July 2015 - June 2019