Department of Cardiac Surgery

The Department of Cardiac Surgery at 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 Department of Cardiac Surgery has grown to become the largest in the United States and one of the most specialized in the world.

We work in collaboration with other specialists and programs within the Heart Center as well as other departments throughout Boston Children’s. We also coordinate with each family’s local pediatrician or heart specialist to ensure the highest quality of care.

Cardiac care over a lifetime

Twenty years ago, when pediatric heart surgery was still in its infancy, our primary concern was whether a baby or child would survive the complex procedures we performed Today, most children do extremely well. What we focus on now is making sure every child leads a long, normal life.

Our depth of experience in cardiac surgery

Our cardiac surgery team is made up of eight pediatric cardiac surgeons who are dedicated to treating patients with congenital heart disease and other rare heart conditions. Each year, our surgeons care for more than 1,000 patients, both children and adults, who require every type of congenital heart surgery. This 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.

Why choose the Department of Cardiac Surgery?

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.

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.

Learn more about what to expect during your child’s pre-operative appointment and on the day of surgery.

Outstanding outcomes

Despite treating some of the most complex pediatric heart conditions in the world, the Cardiac Surgery Program at Boston Children's has some of the best success rates.

Survival Graph