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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  • #17: Quality and Innovation in Cardiothoracic Surgery: Colliding Imperatives?

    June 1, 2018

    The fine line between delivering quality treatment and embracing innovation may sometimes make cardiothoracic surgeons feel trapped between conflicting goals. In his Presidential Address at the 2017 STS Annual Meeting in Houston, Texas, Joseph E. Bavaria, MD challenged that paradigm. He encouraged his colleagues to continually experiment and adapt, but also to always keep the patient in mind.

  • #16: Innovation for Life

    May 25, 2018

    Even though an operation or a process has been around for a long time and may seem “normal,” an innovative idea can change it all. In his Presidential Address at the 2016 STS Annual Meeting in Phoenix, Arizona, Mark S. Allen, MD described five common characteristics shared by innovators inside and outside of medicine and urged cardiothoracic surgeons to embrace innovation and ultimately make the specialty better for themselves and their patients.

  • #15: A New Global Health Crisis

    May 18, 2018

    Over the last several decades, deaths from noncommunicable diseases—including cardiovascular disease and lung and esophageal cancer—have increased in the developing world. In his Presidential Address at the 2015 STS Annual Meeting in San Diego, California, David A. Fullerton, MD outlined the problem, the Society’s efforts to fund charitable surgical missions in developing nations, and STS members who are making a difference.

  • #14: Take It to the Limit

    May 11, 2018

    Taking it to the limit is what cardiothoracic surgery has done for the past 50 years and what STS has done on behalf of the specialty for that same half century; however, some things that once made CT surgery successful may now be counterproductive. In his Presidential Address at the 2014 STS Annual Meeting in Orlando, Florida, Douglas E. Wood, MD challenged his colleagues in the male-dominated profession to welcome in more women and transition away from a masculine, autocratic leadership style.

  • #13: How to Successfully Implement Surgical Innovations and New Technologies into Practice

    May 4, 2018

    Health care professionals tend to be traditional and conservative when it comes to practice, so incorporating new technologies and innovations into the hospital and the operating room can be a challenge. Four cardiothoracic surgery change drivers—Shanda H. Blackmon, MD, MPH, James D. Luketich, MD, T. Sloan Guy, MD, MBA, and Linda W. Martin, MD, MPH—provide advice on how to get buy-in from hospital administrators, as well as team members.

  • #12: The Consequences of Refusing Surgery

    April 27, 2018

    Two studies presented at the recent STS Annual Meeting showed that surgical therapy is superior to alternative treatment approaches for both esophageal cancer and coronary artery disease in younger patients. In light of these findings, Robbin G. Cohen, MD, MMM, Mark S. Allen, MD, Sebron W. Harrison, MD, and Alan M. Speir, MD discuss why patients refuse surgery, how they respond to patients who opt against surgery, and the obligations of surgeons in an age of patient autonomy.

  • #11: Discrepancies Between Evidence-Based and Real-World Practices

    April 20, 2018

    On average, it takes 17 years before new innovation is disseminated into clinical practice. How can cardiothoracic surgery change that statistic and speed up the process? Juan A. Sanchez, MD moderates a discussion with Michael S. Kent, MD, Kevin W. Lobdell, MD, and W. Chance Conner, MD about why there is a gap, strategies for implementation, and quicker adoption by the end user (hospital, clinician, etc.).

  • #10: Evolving Trends in TAVR

    April 13, 2018

    The volumes of two aortic valve replacements (AVR) procedures have changed dramatically over the past few years, with more transcatheter procedures now being performed than open surgical procedures. Four cardiac surgeons discuss the evolving trends in TAVR, why the changes are occurring, and what’s ahead for TAVR and SAVR. Wilson Y. Szeto, MD moderates the discussion that also features Michael J. Mack, MD, John V. Conte, MD, and Thomas E. MacGillivray, MD.

  • #9: Mentorship in Cardiothoracic Surgery

    April 6, 2018

    Mentorship is an important component to success for many up-and-coming cardiothoracic surgeons. For established surgeons, being a good mentor is equally as important. Vinay Badhwar, MD moderates a discussion that includes Shanda H. Blackmon, MD, MPH, Melanie A. Edwards, MD, and David D. Odell, MD, MMSc talking about how mentorship is critical to the future of the specialty and what STS is doing to promote mentorship for early career surgeons.

  • #8: The Debate Over Exercise Restrictions in Cardiac Surgery

    March 30, 2018

    Should patients remain active before, during, and after cardiac surgery? Some surgeons have opposing views. Thomas G. Gleason, MD, from the University of Pittsburgh, and Edward P. Chen, MD, from Emory University, discuss the role of exercise in the treatment and recovery process following surgery for various forms of heart disease, especially among active patients.