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Cardiothoracic & Vascular Surgery

The Division of Cardiothoracic and Vascular Surgery offers the full range of adult cardiac, thoracic and vascular surgery with emphasis placed on the evaluation and management of patients with ischemic heart disease, valvular disorders, thoracic aneurysms and thoracic oncology.  Areas of special interest include off pump coronary bypass, valve surgery, video assisted minimally invasive thoracic surgery, lung cancer, dialysis access, and lower extremity peripheral arterial disease management.

Cardiothoracic and Vascular Surgery applies the latest scientific research and surgical techniques on a daily basis, while maintaining a highly diligent and meticulous approach to diagnosis and treatment. Eschewing an “assembly line” style of care, the department faculty insists that each patient receive highly personalized attention from the surgeon. The referring physician stays in the loop, beginning with the initial consultation right through to the patient’s discharge and eventual follow-up visits.


Cardiac Surgery

  • Adult cardiac, bypass and valve surgery
  • Specialized services: complex valve, redo valve, coronary disease, complex rhythm devices (pacemaker, defibrillator)
  • Minimally invasive coronary artery and valve surgery
  • Modern cardiac laser surgery
  • Bloodless heart surgery

Minimally Invasive

  • MIDCAB (Minimally Invasive Direct Coronary Artery Bypass)
  • OP CABG (Off-pump Coronary Artery Bypass)

Spectranetics Laser Surgery

  • Spectranetics CVX300® Excimer Laser is the only system approved by the FDA for multiple cardiovascular procedures, including cardiac angioplasty and cardiac lead extraction
  • Physicians report 50% faster lead extraction procedure times with the CleaRS™ (Cardiac Lead Removal System) method
  • Lead extraction success rate is 94%, compared to 65% for traditional lead removal methods

Bloodless Surgery

  • Surgical procedures without the use of banked allogenic blood or primary blood components
  • Argon Beam, CO2 and YAG Laser surgery
  • Harmonic Scalpel surgery
  • Arterial Embolization
  • Hemodilution


The Cardiothoracic Surgery division is reviewing the clinical activities of minimally invasive heart surgery, adult cardiac surgery and bloodless medicine and surgery.

Thoracic Oncology Program

Our Thoracic Oncology Program is a comprehensive program that joins together a multidisciplinary staff composed of highly trained thoracic surgeons, pulmonary specialists, radiation oncologists, medical oncologists, cytopathologists, and nurse practitioners in one location. Our collaborative, unified approach fosters a shared knowledge and expertise that provides patients with a customized treatment plan to deliver the best care for thoracic tumors including: small and non-small cell lung cancer, mesothelioma, thymoma, and bronchial carcinoid.

Complex thoracic resections for large, difficult lung tumors and minimally invasive surgeries, including VATS (video-assisted thoracoscopic surgery) or robotically-assisted surgery for lung cancer. This allows a lobectomy (removal of one lobe of the lung) through small incisions, which results in less pain, shorter hospital stays, quicker recovery time, and less trauma to the chest. We offer access to the latest clinical trials through different cooperative groups, with the majority funded by the National Cancer Institute (NCI). Our lung cancer patients have benefited from participating in these NCI-sponsored clinical trials.

Vascular and Endovascular Surgery

The Vascular Surgery service offers comprehensive treatment for vascular disease including stenting, thoracic aneurysms, and all vascular disease.

Our new Endovascular Surgery Program takes a multidisciplinary approach that brings our physician specialists, nurses and technologists together in one place to deliver care. Creighton University Medical Center’s new high-tech endovascular suite features boom-mounted surgical equipment that vascular specialists can glide into place when needed so the equipment is within easy reach, with practically no motion of the surgical team wasted. In addition, in the unlikely event a simple endovascular procedure becomes more complex, the equipment to perform an open surgery is within reach, without need to move the patient. The Endovascular Program at Creighton University Medical Center offers the following endovascular procedures:

  • Carotid stenting
  • Peripheral stenting
  • Stent grafts for abdominal aortic aneurysms (AAAs) and thoracic aortic aneurysms (TAAs)
  • Balloon angioplasty