What Does A Cardiothoracic Surgeon Do?


A cardiothoracic surgeon specializes in surgical treatment of the chest ( all organs inside the thorax).  They also deal with the problems of the heart and lungs. After they are done with the medical school, these surgeons are required to add one more year and specialize in their area of interest so as to become medical specialist.


It takes around 15 years for one to become a cardiothoracic surgeon between college, medical school, training at the residency and fellowship training. Cardiothoracic surgeon deals with diseases that are mainly found in the organs inside the chest such as the esophagus, the bone structures and tissues that make the chest cavity.



The surgeons have to open the chest, insert a long thin tube which is attached to the camera to be able to see which area needs is affected. This is mostly done when the surgeon needs to operate lungs that have been affected by cancer. They operate on aortic valve diseases. Coronary artery is one of the most common diseases known to be operated by cardiothoracic surgeons.


cardiothoracic surgeon


This disease is mostly brought about by clotting of the blood in the coronary artery. When the blood clots, the patient gets heart attack where the surgeons injects them with a clot-dissolving agent to ensure that the blood is flowing. The surgeon then decides if the patient needs to undergo artery bypass graft surgery.
The surgeons also deal with lung surgery.


There are many types of lung problems which include; Lung transplant, surgery to remove an infection, Biopsy of unknown growth, surgery to prevent buildup of fluids in the chest and many more. For the cardiologist to gain access to the lungs they have to open up the chest cavity.  They have to spread the ribs apart so as to be able to operate on the lungs.


Cardiothoracic surgeons also perform cardiac surgeries. This includes; heart valve repair, replacement of the heart valve mitral valve repair and many more. The patient is taken to the transplant room which is near the cardiac room to ensure easier access to support. The surgeon observes the heart and studies it to decide the best way to deal with the affected area.


Abnormal enlargement of the artery wall (aneurysms) is also treated by the cardiothoracic surgeon. With early detection this disease is treated with medicines which lower blood levels and relax the vessels thus reducing the risk of rapture.


If the aneurysms is growing faster one needs to be operated by a cardiothoracic surgeon where they can recommend either open abdominal chest repair and endovascular repair depending on the affected area.


Hospitals cannot do without cardiothoracic surgeons because due to the lifestyles cardio diseases are increasing day by day. If detected early cardio diseases can be treated very easily and help minimize death rates.


The surgeons take many years to specialize in this field and this ensures the quality of the operation done is of the highest level. With a cardiothoracic surgeon there is no need to keep worrying about cardiac diseases.




Cardiothoracic Surgeon Education requirements

If you are thinking about becoming a cardiothoracic surgeon, then your main focus will be the organs and the bone structure plus tissues that surround the chest cavity area.


There is a lot of schooling involved to get the skills and knowledge needed to become a cardiothoracic surgeon.You need to have high levels of patience and be able to focus well with the dedication to do the job well.You need to have a good emotional capacity, physical skills and be able to handle leadership.


There are four main areas in Cardiothoracic surgery which is heart and lung transplants, general surgery, congenital surgery and surgery specifically for adults.With so many advances in the cardiothoracic surgery field this field has become saferthan ever.


The definition of a cardiothoracic surgeon is the surgical for people who specialize in treating heart problems. They generally do heart transplants, artery bypass surgery, valve replacements and repairing congenital heart problems.


You can choose to either work at a medical Centre or own your own personal business.


Education needed

The education courses need to specialize in cardiothoracic surgery rank in the top longest of the medical field.  There is a starter of four years of schooling in medical then another 5 years in general surgery then another 3 years for cardiothoracic fellowship.


All surgeons specializing in cardiac must be certified in the American Board Medical Specialist before they get certification for the cardiothoracic surgery part.


All surgeons must get a state license. The requirements are going to a medical school that is highly accredited then complete a residency and passing the U.S. medical licensing examination.


In the U.S. Bureau of labor statistics cardio surgeons are familiar with the subjects of biochemistry, pathology, anatomy, and such medical ethics.
Cardiac surgeons will have beyond knowledge of the heart and blood vessels and have expert knowledge also in the lung department.


This type of surgery is not for the faint hearted and certainly not for those who second guess. Your life will have to change and be dedicated to your working career.


The financial side of becoming a surgeon

There are significant costs involved in becoming a cardiac surgeon. You are looking at costs between $50,000 to $150,000.


However, don’t be alarmed there are grants and financial aids offered to people who are serious in studying cardiac surgery.


The necessary skills needed to be a cardiac surgeon;


  • You must be able to operate with great care and keep the patients safety as a priority always.


  • You need to be happy working all day and long demanding hours.


  • Able to face the challenges of thoracic procedures


  • Be able to communicate with families and their families this is a more personal level than it is just talking with other nurses and doctors.


  • The ability to provide the best medical care to the patients that is possible.


  • Learn to use precision equipment and robotic tools


  • Be able for emergency surgeries


  • Have an unlimited stamina and determination