Cardiothoracic Surgery

The Nemours Cardiac Center, Orlando at Nemours Children’s Hospital is giving babies and children with heart conditions the very best chance at life. 

Our top pediatric cardiothoracic surgeons (specializing in the heart and chest) have the expertise to correct virtually all heart defects — including ventricular septal defects, truncus arteriosus and atrioventricular canal defects — using up-to-date and innovative procedures. 

With a focus on achieving the best possible outcomes, we participate in a national congenital heart surgery database of procedures and outcomes organized by the Society for Thoracic Surgery. This means we focus on providing the highest quality of care and voluntarily report our surgical data for online public and peer review. 

Excellence in Pediatric Heart Surgery in Orlando

In Orlando, our pediatric cardiac surgery teams specialize in early detection and repair of congenital heart defects (particularly complex congenital heart disease). We correct most heart problems, such as transposition of the great arteries and tetralogy of Fallot, with a single operation in early infancy; more complex conditions may require a series of two or three operations.

We also use minimally invasive techniques whenever possible to significantly improve the outlook for children, often with less discomfort, faster recovery time and shorter hospital stays.

Advanced Nonsurgical Treatments

In addition to pediatric open-heart surgery, we employ advanced nonsurgical approaches like cardiac interventional catheterization (correcting problems using a thin, plastic, flexible tube called a “catheter” inserted into a blood vessel in the leg that leads to the heart).

Procedures We Offer 

We perform nearly every type of pediatric cardiothoracic surgery, such as:

  • aortic coarctation repair
  • arterial switch operation
  • atrial septal defect (ASD) closure
  • atrioventricular (AV) canal (also called AV septal defect) repair
  • bidirectional Glenn and hemi-Fontan procedures (superior cavopulmonary connection)
  • Fontan procedure
  • hybrid Norwood procedure
  • Norwood procedure (stage 1)
  • patent ductus arteriosus (PDA) ligation
  • pulmonary artery banding
  • pulmonary valve repair and replacement
  • Ross procedure and aortic valve repair or replacement
  • systemic-pulmonary shunt (modified Blalock-Taussig shunt)
  • tetralogy of Fallot repair
  • valve-sparing aortic root replacement (also called the David procedure)
  • ventricular septal defect (VSD) closure

Cardiothoracic Surgery Expertise

  • expert management of single-ventricle anomalies (including the Fontan procedure)
  • neonatal surgery (operations on newborns)
  • surgical treatment for heart failure and post-heart transplantation care (mechanical circulatory support and extracorporeal membrane oxygenation, or ECMO)
  • heart valve repair and replacement
  • aortic surgery (surgery of the largest blood vessel coming from the heart)
  • thoracic surgery (chest surgery, including the Nuss and Ravitch procedures)

While heart surgery is performed at Nemours Children’s Hospital in Orlando, follow-up care is available at many Nemours Cardiac Center in Florida locations.  

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Your Child's Pediatric Cardiac Surgery Team

The pediatric cardiac surgery team is led by a cardiothoracic surgeon and includes trained pediatric:

  • cardiac anesthesiologists
  • electrophysiologists
  • critical care physicians
  • advanced practice nurses (APNs)
  • physician assistants (PAs)
  • respiratory therapists (evaluate and treat breathing problems)
  • nurses (operating room, cardiac intensive care unit and inpatient unit)
  • social workers
  • dietitians (nutritionists)
  • physical and occupational therapists
  • Child Life specialists 

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Care Where Kids Need It

Nemours Cardiac Center expands care across Florida based on patient need.

Locations and Facilities »