Podcast Episodes

The Society's podcast, Surgical Hot Topics, features leaders in cardiothoracic surgery discussing important issues in the field. Please note: The comments included in these episodes are that of the individuals involved and not necessarily that of The Society of Thoracic Surgeons.

Find episodes here, or subscribe via the links below:

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  • #60: STS Summer Series: Economic Impact of COVID and Implications for the Future of Cardiothoracic Surgery

    July 3, 2020

    STS President Joseph A. Dearani, MD, moderates a panel discussion that includes surgeons, a hospital executive, and a health care consultant on the economic impact of COVID and its implications for cardiothoracic surgery. At a time when cardiothoracic surgeons face 7%-8% cuts in Medicare reimbursement, they talked about the financial strain that COVID has had on staffing and salaries, how cardiothoracic surgeons quickly adapted to their roles on the front lines, the potential need for surgeons to begin rebuilding their referral networks, and the positive accelerated development of telemedicine opportunities. Panelists include Vinay Badhwar, MD, Richard K. Freeman, MD, MBA, Robert S. Jasak, JD, and Roberta Schwartz, PhD.

  • #59: STS Summer Series: How I Learned Robotic Cardiac Surgery

    June 13, 2020

    T. Sloane Guy, MD, MBA, and Husam H. Balkhy, MD, moderate a discussion with surgeons who are experts in robotic cardiac procedures. They talk about how they got started in robotic surgery, the importance of institutional support for building and training a team, and the efficacy of robotic surgery as an instructional tool for residents and fellows. Panelists include Vinay Badhwar, MD, Arnar Geirsson, MD, Eugene A. Grossi, MD, Robert L. Smith II, MD, and Francis P. Sutter, DO.

     

  • #58: Beyond the Abstract: STS Intermacs 2019 Annual Report, The Changing Landscape of Devices and Indications

    June 12, 2020

    Hosted by Thomas K. Varghese Jr., MD, MS, the “Beyond the Abstract” program explores the “whys” behind articles in The Annals of Thoracic Surgery and discusses next steps with authors and thought leaders. In the latest episode, Francis D. Pagani, MD, PhD, joins Dr. Varghese to discuss the findings of the Intermacs 2019 Annual Report. They mentioned the decrease in patients listed for a transplant when they received an LVAD, introduction of new technologies, and a comparison of technologies. Read the related Annals article online: The Society of Thoracic Surgeons Intermacs 2019 Annual Report: The Changing Landscape of Devices and Indications

  • #57: STS Summer Series: Early Career Surgeons, COVID-19, and the Future

    June 5, 2020

    STS President Joseph A. Dearani, MD, and Mara B. Antonoff, MD, moderate an interactive panel discussion with early career cardiothoracic surgeons about how COVID has affected their scope of work and how it may change going forward. They also discuss the expanding role of telemedicine and silver linings from the COVID pandemic. Panelists include Elizabeth A. David, MD, Melanie A. Edwards, MD, Gabriel Loor, MD, HelenMari L. Merritt-Genore, DO, Olugbenga T. Okusanya, MD, and Elizabeth H. Stephens, MD, PhD.

     

  • #56: Beyond the Abstract: STS Practice Survey

    June 3, 2020

    Hosted by Thomas K. Varghese Jr., MD, MS, the “Beyond the Abstract” program explores the “whys” behind articles in The Annals of Thoracic Surgery and discusses next steps with authors and thought leaders. In the latest episode, John S. Ikonomidis, MD, PHD, joins Dr. Varghese to discuss the findings from the 2019 STS Practice Survey. Mandatory cognitive testing, increasing the number of women in the workforce, and job satisfaction are a few of the topics that are addressed. Read the related Annals article, “The Society of Thoracic Surgeons Thoracic Surgery Practice and Access Task Force—2019 Workforce Report.”

  • #55: Beyond the Abstract: Does tumor FDG-PET Avidity Represent Enhanced Glycolytic Metabolism in Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer?

    May 29, 2020

    The death rate from cancer has steadily declined over the past 25 years; however, worldwide there were 9.6 million deaths in 2018, with lung cancer still number one among all cancer types. In the latest episode of “Beyond the Abstract,” a program that explores the “whys” behind an article in The Annals of Thoracic Surgery, Dr. Kemp H. Kernstine joins host Dr. Tom Varghese to discuss whether tumor FDG-PET avidity represents enhanced glycolytic metabolism in non-small cell lung cancer. Read the related Annals article, "Does tumor FDG-PET Avidity Represent Enhanced Glycolytic Metabolism in Non-Small Cell Lung Cancer?

  • #54: Beyond the Abstract: Pain and Opioid Use After Thoracic Surgery

    May 12, 2020

    Hosted by Thomas K. Varghese Jr., MD, MS, the “Beyond the Abstract” program explores the “whys” behind articles in The Annals of Thoracic Surgery and discusses next steps with authors and thought leaders. In the latest episode, Lisa M. Brown, MD, MAS, joins Dr. Varghese to discuss a widespread unresolved healthcare problem—pain. Dr. Brown explains why it is important to learn more about predictors of chronic pain and the impact on health-related quality of life, known as pain interference. Read the related Annals Article, “Pain and Opioid Use After Thoracic Surgery: Where We Are and Where We Need To Go.”

  • #53: The Future of Mitral Valve Repair

    April 21, 2020

    Managing and treating mitral valve disease have both changed radically over the past few years and now include transcatheter as well as surgical approaches. What does the future hold for mitral valve repair and replacement? During the most recent STS Annual Meeting, Vinod Thourani, MD, asked that question of Steven F. Bolling, MD, Gorav Ailawadi, MD, and Wilson Y. Szeto, MD. They also discussed new tools and technologies, making sure that cardiothoracic surgeons are involved on the care team, and training with transcatheter techniques.

  • #52: Appropriate Use of Robotics in Cardiothoracic Surgery

    April 13, 2020

    Robotics is being called the “fourth industrial revolution." For some cardiothoracic surgeons, robotics means smaller, faster, and easier, resulting in patients getting out of the hospital sooner, having less pain, and returning to function faster. For others, the jury is still out on whether or not robotics will add long-term value, especially if surgeons face potential carpal tunnel injuries, back pain, and cervical stenosis. David T. Cooke, MD, moderates a panel discussion with Robert E. Merritt, MD, Lana Y. Schumacher, MD, Melanie A. Edwards, MD, and Inderpal S. Sarkaria, MD. They discuss the learning curve for robotic surgery, the complexity of procedures that can be performed robotically, a team approach to robotic surgery, getting hands-on experience, and future improvements to robotic technology.

  • #51: Beyond the Abstract: COVID-19 Guidance for Triage of Operations for Thoracic Malignancies

    April 13, 2020

    As the Society is taking proactive steps to help its members and other health care professionals deal with the evolving COVID-19 pandemic it is also developing guidance documents—one for each discipline. In the latest episode of "Beyond the Abstract," Dr. Daniel J. Boffa joins Dr. Thomas K. Varghese to talk about the guidance provided by representatives from multiple cancer, surgical, and research organizations for triaging patients with thoracic malignancies. Read the related Annals Article: "COVID-19 Guidance for Triage of Operations for Thoracic Malignancies."