Cardiothoracic Surgery

Driscoll Children’s Hospital established Cardiothoracic Surgery Services soon after it opened its doors in 1953. Cardiothoracic Surgery is a subspecialty of surgery that involves the structures of the chest and blood vessels of the body. This includes the heart, lungs, esophagus and vascular system. Our doctors perform cardiothoracic surgery on neonates, infants, children and even adults with problems of the heart and lung that are congenital. Together with a highly skilled teams of surgeons, cardiologists, intensivists and anesthesiologists, these doctors are exclusively dedicated to the care of children with congenital heart disease. In 1984, Dr. James Duff performed the first successful neonatal aortic switch in the state at Driscoll Children’s Hospital.

The cardiothoracic surgeries they perform include minimally invasive, “bloodless” surgery, ECMO, arrhythmia surgery, intra-operative stent techniques, etc. A full-service heart catheterization laboratory as well as a pediatric neonatal intensive care unit provide further support services in conjunction with cardiothoracic surgery.

Currently, the cardiothoracic program has evolved into a highly sophisticated team that performs more than 500 procedures per year. Our expertise includes the management of newborns with complex heart lesions including single ventricle abnormalities, hypoplastic left heart ventricle syndrome, truncus arteriosus, interrupted aortic arch and transposition of the great arteries.


  • Valve replacement surgery to replace a heart valve that is not opening or closing correctly
  • Maze surgery to eliminate abnormal heart rhythm (atrial fibrillation)
  • Pacemaker and defibrillator implants to normalize the heartbeat
  • Ventricular assist device

Visit all your child's specialists in one trip to Driscoll Children's Hospital!

For your convenience, please ask any of our specialty clinics to coordinate all of your child's appointments in one day.

You can contact us at (361) 694-5000 or call your specialty clinic directly for further assistance.