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At the Department of Cardiac Surgery at Boston Children’s Hospital, our mission is to relentlessly raise the standards of care for patients with congenital heart disease.

Our group of 12 cardiac surgeons is dedicated to treating patients with congenital heart disease and other rare heart conditions. Each year, our surgeons perform more than 1,000 surgeries, on both children and adults. This depth of 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.

The Department of Cardiac Surgery at Boston Children’s has been at the forefront of pediatric heart surgery since 1938, when our department performed the first operation to correct a congenital heart defect.

In the years since that groundbreaking procedure, our department has grown to become the largest in the United States, and includes 11 specific surgical programs. We routinely operate on children that are deemed too complex for other heart centers, while still achieving some of the best success rates in the world.

Graphic reads: “Celebrating Heart Month | Heart Month February 2023”

Celebrate Heart Month

Every February, Boston Children’s raises awareness about congenital heart disease by celebrating our amazing patients — who exemplify what it truly means to be a warrior — the clinicians who treat them, and the researchers who improve how treatment is delivered.

This month, join us on the Benderson Family Heart Center Facebook and Twitter pages and the Boston Children’s Answers blog as we celebrate all those who make Heart Month special.

Collaborating with every expert to deliver the best care

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.

We work in collaboration with other specialists and programs within the Benderson Family Heart Center as well as other departments throughout Boston Children’s. We also coordinate with each patient’s local pediatrician or heart specialist to ensure continuity of care for even the most complex cases.

Our depth of experience in cardiac surgery

Reducing recovery time and improving outcomes

Our surgical team has adopted Enhanced Recovery After Cardiac Surgery (ERAS Cardiac) practices. ERAS Cardiac is an initiative in surgical care designed to achieve early recovery for patients. This approach uses evidence-based guidelines to quicken recovery, reduce complications, decrease time in the hospital, and improve patient and family satisfaction.

Illustration of cardiac surgery innovations

Over the past eight plus decades, the Department of Cardiac Surgery at Boston Children’s has pioneered research and innovations that have dramatically improved survival rates and the quality of life for children born with heart defects. Our surgeons have led the way in developing groundbreaking surgical innovations, pushing boundaries and correcting ever more complex abnormalities.

Outstanding outcomes

Despite treating some of the most complex pediatric heart conditions in the world, the Department of Cardiac Surgery at Boston Children's has some of the best success rates. Data taken from the Society for Thoracic Surgeons (STS) Congenital Heart Surgery Database.

 

Four-year case volume

Data for surgery performed: July 2017 - June 2021

 

Four-year survival Comparison

Data for surgery performed: July 2017 - June 2021

Length of stay

Four-year post-op length of stay

Data for surgery performed: July 2017 - June 2021

Data for surgery performed: July 2017 - June 2021