Division of Cardiac Surgery

Cardiac Surgery is made up of about 10 cardiac surgeons who performed nearly 1,500 procedures in 2017-2018. These procedures include everything from complex valve repairs and replacements to coronary artery bypasses. 

Members continued to lead projects and innovations in clinical care, research and education. Multidisciplinary Heart Teams continued to function as the basis for evidencebased decision-making for the treatment of all cardiac surgical patients. The Royal College approved six-year Residency Training Program led by Dr. William Kent continued to attract the best and brightest individuals, maintaining a 100% examination success rate since its inception.

Members also lead projects and innovations in clinical care, research and education. 

Education

The Residency Training Program is highly regarded across the country and known to provide first-rate, hands-on training from an early stage. Thus far, all trainees have passed their Royal College Certification exam. All members contribute to the training of our residents, and there is protected time every week for formal teaching. Members also regularly contribute to the teaching of medical students and residents rotating on Cardiac Surgery from other specialties such as cardiology, vascular surgery, and thoracic surgery.

Research

The Section of Cardiac Surgery is actively involved in clinical, basic, and translational research. Clinical studies largely reflect the niche expertise of our Section members. Dr. Terry Kieser is an international expert in arterial bypass grafting for coronary artery disease and her research work provides the basis for guidelines for the assessment of arterial bypass graft quality. Drs. Jehangir Appoo and Scott McClure are examining the epidemiology and natural history of ascending aortic aneurysms and aortic dissection as well as publishing our center’s excellent results with “extended arch” surgery for such pathology. Dr. Paul Fedak heads a basic science and translational laboratory and continues to mentor several MSc and PhD students. Dr. Fedak was the recipient of a prestigious NIH grant valued at $3 million in conjunction with his co-workers at Northwestern University in Chicago. This research will utilize 4D cardiac MRI to characterize bicuspid aortic valvopathy (BAV) and lead to a better understanding of when to operate and what operation to do in such patients.

Clinical Care

The number of procedures performed by Cardiac Surgery has increased by about 50 per cent since 2010. Our members perform numerous subspecialty operations in complex aortic surgery, hybrid aortic surgery, minimally-invasive valve surgery, complete arterial revascularization and transcatheter aortic valve surgery (TAVR). Members also continue their innovations. For example, the division recently adopted the “move in the tube” concept, replacing the standard “sternal precautions” approach for post-operative patients with the goal of faster recovery for open-heart surgery patients.