Providing Cardiothoracic & Pulmonary Surgery Services

Highest performing hospital award for heart failure treatment, US News

What Is Cardiothoracic Surgery?

Cardiothoracic surgeons use surgery to treat diseases that affect the organs inside your chest, including your heart, esophagus, and lungs. They specialize in the following treatments and conditions:

  • heart surgery
  • aortic surgery
  • thoracic surgery
  • complex congenital heart disease
  • end-stage heart and lung failure

Our highly-qualified specialists diagnose and treat the entire range of cardiac disease. We also work together with all of our other specialists at University of Utah Health to make sure you receive the best care.

Cardiothoracic surgery at University of Utah Health is committed to superior patient care, clinical care, and research into diseases confronting our patients. We have a nationally recognized program that uses leading-edge medical technology in all of our cardiothoracic procedures.

Find a Cardiothoracic Surgeon

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Why We Are Unique

Our surgical cardiothoracic team practices innovative research that improves patients' lives and is helping to shape the future of heart and lung surgery. Patients who were once thought untreatable have found new hope.

Treating Patients With Complicated Diseases

Because we treat patients who have very complicated or high-risk conditions, we see patients from the entire Mountain West, including Utah, Idaho, Wyoming, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, and Arizona.

We also perform fewer invasive procedures, which shortens recovery time for our patients. Having more options for cardiothoracic surgery procedures allows you to make a truly informed decision about your treatment.

First Open Heart Operation in the US

In 1956, we performed one of the first open heart surgeries in the country, and we implanted the first total artificial heart in 1981.

Patient Stories

Heart Procedure Returns Nevada Man to His "Get Up and Go" Lifestyle

In March 2012, Bill Deist came down with a simple, run-of-the-mill cold. Or so he thought. When his symptoms persisted for months, he decided it was time to see a doctor. What he discovered was a rare case in which a cold virus had begun to attack his heart.

Exceptional Patient—Allen Elmore

Allen Elmore worried about the possibility of having a left ventricular assist device (LVAD) implanted into his heart, but when the 62-year-old New Mexico man suffered a heart attack, he was left with few options. In May 2013, Elmore underwent an LVAD procedure. What does an accomplished blues musician, do to recovery from heart surgery?

High-Risk Liver & Valve Transplant Surgery a Success Thanks to U Doctors

Joe Yanez was a high school junior in 1966 when he suffered an appendicitis attack. He was taken to the hospital unconscious and when he awakened, Yanez learned his attack was so serious he needed a blood transfusion. Thirty years after that transfusion, Yanez learned that the it caused him to develop hepatitis C and damaged his liver but his doctors in Colorado were unable to help him.

Quick Diagnosis of Aortic Dissection Gives Wyoming Man a New Lease on Life

Just hours earlier, Matthew York had been a happy groom vowing to honor his new wife Evelyn. By 5 a.m. of the following morning, he was reaching out to her as she slept by his side, pleading that she save his life.