Weill Cornell Medicine|NewYork-Presbyterian has a distinguished history of leadership in the field of heart surgery. We have a proven track record of superior outcomes, year after year. Under the leadership of Dr. Leonard Girardi our specialists have performed more than 35,000 cardiac surgery procedures with excellent results. Our surgical outcomes have routinely surpassed the regional and national benchmark statistics for mortality and major complications.
But that's just the beginning. When you come to The Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery for your care, we assess your health and create a personalized plan of care tailored just for you. Neither your age nor your other health conditions will prohibit us from offering you the best care available in one of the nation's top hospitals. And when you're ready to leave the hospital, we have the support services you need — such as rehabilitation and social work — to help you adjust back to your normal routine.
We bring together a multidisciplinary team of healthcare professionals who collaborate in one of the nation's top hospitals to manage cardiac disease — from the routine to the most complex. Cardiac surgeons, cardiologists, anesthesiologists, radiologists, pathologists, neurologists, physician assistants, nurse practitioners, dedicated cardiac intensive care nurses, respiratory therapists and social workers work as one team to deliver seamless, high-quality care to our patients before, during and after their hospital stay. Patients have access to the full complement of care, including the services of other departments who can treat other health disorders as well as rehabilitation services (such as respiratory therapy, physical therapy and nutritionists) to get them back to a healthy level of function.
We firmly believe that our patients should be treated like our own family, with kindness and compassion. We understand that the diagnosis of cardiac disease can be worrisome and may cause anxiety and distress, so we are sure to attend to patients' emotional needs as well. Once we are contacted for a cardiac consultation we schedule appointments as quickly as possible, and in most cases within 24 hours. We also coordinate with other departments to ensure that scheduling of other services and tests, surgery and subsequent appointments are completed smoothly. Our aim is to communicate the results of our evaluation in a timely manner so we can tailor each patient's individualized plan of care. Our patient coordinators help with the scheduling of all tests and appointments, provide directions, take care of insurance issues and generally guide patients and their families as they navigate the healthcare system.
Has your doctor recommended that you have heart surgery? With WCM OnDemand Second Opinion — a partnership between Weill Cornell Medicine, NewYork-Presbyterian and Grand Rounds — you can turn to our world-class experts to help you make an informed medical decision at a time that works for you, from wherever you live.
Weill Cornell heart surgeons are experts in the following areas:
Valve Repair and Replacement
Our surgeons are experienced in the repair and replacement of all types of heart valves, such as mitral valves and aortic valves. Our center plays a leading role in pivotal clinical trials which established the effectiveness of minimally invasive percutaneous aortic valve replacement, which makes valve surgery a reality for many patients who are too ill to undergo traditional surgical valve replacement.
Aortic Aneurysm Repair
The repair of aortic aneurysms requires exceptional skill and experience. Our surgeons have extraordinary expertise in this area, particularly in patients who have other health problems and those who are elderly. We specialize in repairing aneurysms in the ascending aorta using a valve-sparing approach. We are able to repair aneurysms in any part of the aorta including the aortic root, ascending aorta, aortic arch, descending thoracic aorta, thoracoabdominal aorta and abdominal aorta. Our program is one of the largest aortic aneurysm programs in the region. We offer a minimally invasive repair using endovascular stent-grafts (TEVAR or EVAR) to patients with appropriate anatomy. If a minimally invasive approach is not possible, our surgeons are highly skilled and experienced in using traditional open surgical approaches.
Coronary Artery Bypass Graft (CABG)
Weill Cornell surgeons have an extensive history of performing coronary artery bypass surgeries. We offer CABG through the conventional open-heart surgery approach, as well as minimally invasive "off-pump" procedures that eliminate the need for a heart-lung machine. We take a modernized approach to coronary bypass surgery using multiple arterial grafts whenever feasible to provide our patients with maximal graft patency and survival.
Pediatric Heart Surgery
In one of the country's most renowned programs, our pediatric cardiac surgeons perform the full spectrum of heart procedures to repair congenital disorders in children — from newborns and infants to older children and adolescents. We offer comprehensive care that includes educational, social and nutritional support to help children get back to the business of being children.
Adult Congenital Heart Surgery
Weill Cornell surgeons are leaders in the treatment of people with congenital heart disease who were not diagnosed until adulthood, as well as adults who had congenital heart surgery as children who need another procedure as an adult. Patients are able to receive their care in a hospital setting designed for adults, without having to stay in a children's hospital.
Our team offers the latest ventricular assist devices (VADs) for patients with heart failure who cannot adequately be treated with medication. VADs can be used in patients as temporary support while waiting for heart muscle recovery, as temporary support while awaiting a heart transplant ("bridge to heart transplant"), and as "destination" (permanent) therapy for those who are not eligible for a transplant.
Heart Rhythm Abnormalities
At Weill Cornell Medicine, we specialize in the surgical treatment of atrial fibrillation. Using approaches such as the modified CryoMAZE surgical procedure, we can interrupt the path of abnormal electrical impulses that cause the arrhythmia.