Cardiovascular and Thoracic Surgery

The Number One Choice in San Diego is Scripps

Scripps offers some of the most advanced surgical options for patients with life-threatening heart conditions and diseases. Whether the surgery is traditional open heart surgery, minimally invasive or robot-assisted surgery, we have you covered. The expertise and skills of Scripps cardiovascular and thoracic surgeons have helped make us the choice of more heart patients than any other San Diego health care provider.

Heart Surgery at Scripps Health

Cardiovascular surgeons at Scripps Health provide a wide range of heart surgeries including open heart surgery and minimally-invasive procedures.

Learn more about cardiovascular surgery at Scripps.

Lung and Thoracic Surgery

At Scripps Health in San Diego, thoracic surgery is performed in new hybrid OR suites that offer the latest advances in surgical care.

Learn more about lung and thoracic surgery at Scripps.

Relentless innovation and clinical excellence

We offer a full range of innovative cardiovascular and thoracic surgery options and procedures performed by physicians who are ushering in a new era of cardiac care. Heart surgery at Scripps offers patients the promise of improved outcomes and faster recovery times.

Scripps is top-rated in San Diego for cardiology and heart surgery by U.S. News & World Report in its 2014-2015 “Best Hospitals” annual rankings. The cardiac procedures we offer through nationally recognized Scripps surgeons and supporting clinical teams include:

Cardiovascular surgeries

Cardiovascular surgeries are those performed on the heart and its circulatory system including the major arteries and veins. Cardiovascular procedures performed by cardiac surgeons at Scripps include:

  • MAZE procedure in which surgeons make incisions in the atria (top chambers of the heart) to block electrical currents causing abnormal heart rhythms. The procedure may be traditional open heart surgery and performed in conjunction with other procedures, including robot-assited surgery or other minimally invasive procedures.
  • Coronary artery bypass graft surgery (also known as CABG or bypass surgery), in which a blocked coronary artery is bypassed through surgical placement of a new healthy vessel from the leg or other part of the body. The surgery can be performed as traditional open heart surgery, minimally invasive or robot-assisted surgery, in which a surgeon harvests an internal mammary artery using the tiny robotic arms, then makes a small incision to connect the artery to the coronary artery below the blocked area.
  • Atrial septal defect repair to close a hole in the wall of the heart between the left and right atria (top chambers). The surgery can be performed as traditional open heart surgery, minimally invasive or robot-assisted surgery.
  • Ventricular septal defect repair to close a hole in the wall of the heart between the left and right ventricles (bottom chambers). The surgery is a traditional open heart procedure. Many ventricular septal defects do not cause heart problems, will repair on their own or can be repaired non-surgically. Make sure to speak with your physician to determine the best treatment option for you.
  • Valve-sparing aortic root replacement (also known as David procedure) is used to treat aortic aneurysms and prevent aortic dissection. The objective is to preserve the aortic valve while an aortic aneurysm is repaired. If the aortic valve is diseased, a bioprosthetic valve is used as a replacement. The procedure may be traditional open heart or partial open heart surgery (partial sternotomy).
  • Ascending aorta surgery in which the section of the aorta leaving the heart is repaired. The surgery may be traditional open heart or partial open heart (partial sternotomy).
  • Transaortic valve replacement (TAVR) where surgeons repair the aortic valve by inserting a replacement valve inside the section of damaged valve. The surgery is minimally invasive.
  • Aortic valve repair or replacement where surgeons may use an artificial (mechanical) valve or biological valve to replace the aortic valve. The surgery may be open heart aortic valve repair, minimally invasive through port access or robot-assisted surgery.
  • Right anterior thoracic aortic valve repair or replacement in which surgeons may use an artificial (mechanical) valve or biological valve. The surgery is minimally invasive through port access.
  • Tricuspid valve repair or replacement in which cardiovascular surgeons may use an artificial (mechanical) valve or biological valve. The surgery repairs or replaces the damaged tricuspid valve between the heart’s right atrium (top right chamber) and right ventricle (bottom right chamber) and may be traditional open heart, minimally invasive or robot-assisted surgery.
  • Mitral valve repair or replacement where surgeons may use an artificial (mechanical) valve or biological valve. The surgery repairs or replaces a damaged mitral valve between the heart’s left atrium (top left chamber) and left ventricle (bottom left chamber) and traditional open heart, minimally invasive or robot-assisted surgery.
  • Left ventricle assist device (LVAD) where surgeons implant a mechanical pump to provide circulatory support for a weakened heart, ensuring that oxygen-rich blood is pumped through the body.

Lung and thoracic surgeries

Thoracic surgeries are those performed on the heart, lungs, esophagus and other organs in the chest. Thoracic surgery also includes cardiothoracic surgical procedures. Thoracic surgical procedures performed by thoracic and cardiothoracic surgeons at Scripps include:

  • Video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery (VATS) in which surgeons use a thoracoscope and special instruments through small incisions in the chest to perform lung procedures. The surgery may be minimally invasive or robot-assisted surgery.
  • Lobectomy in which thoracic surgeons enter the chest through the ribs to remove an entire section (lobe) of the lung while sparing healthy tissues. The surgery may be minimally invasive or robot-assisted surgery.
  • Cardiac tumor removal to remove rare benign or malignant (cancerous) tumors in the heart or heart valves. These tumors typically originate in the heart. Malignant tumors of the heart are those that have spread from other parts of the body. The surgery may be minimally invasive or robot-assisted surgery.
  • Mediastinal tumor removal to remove benign or malignant tumors that form in the mediastinum, which is the part of the chest between the sternum and spinal cord bordered by the lungs. The surgery may be minimally invasive or robot-assisted surgery.
  • Thrombectomy to remove a blot clot from a blood vessel. This type of cardiothoracic surgery may be minimally invasive or robot-assisted surgery.
  • Thymectomy to remove the thymus, an organ that produces T cells for the body’s immune system. The surgery may be minimally invasive or robot-assisted surgery.
  • Lung reduction to remove diseased tissue for improved functioning of healthy lung tissue.
  • Lung pleurodesis, which is a procedure to treat a recurrent collapsed lung or prevent the buildup of fluid between the lung and chest wall.
  • Lung decortication to peel the lining of the lung for improved lung expansion.
  • Bleb resection in which surgeons staple a bubble on the lung surface to prevent leakage and improve function.
  • Pericardial window is a cardiac surgical procedure where surgeons make an opening between the ribs to drain accumulated fluid around the heart.
  • Tracheal and esophageal surgery to correct conditions of the throat and passage way from the throat to the stomach.