Understanding the Training of a Cardiothoracic Surgeon
A cardiothoracic surgeon performs cardiothoracic surgery which is treatment of heart and lungs through surgical procedures. The heart and lung disease are commonly treated through the surgery performed. The cardiothoracic surgeon residency is usually six to nine years or longer in length for qualifications to be completed. Vascular and thoracic surgeries are combined with the training in cardiac surgery. Residency can be entered into once a student has completed medical school. A residency in general surgery can be completed prior to entering into a cardiothoracic surgeon fellowship.
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Those entering into the field of cardiac surgery can sub-specialize in cardiac transplantation, weak heart issues, adult acquired heart disease and pediatric cardiac surgery. A residency in general surgery is typically one that lasts for up to seven years with the cardiothoracic surgeon fellowship lasting only three years on average. The time spent in the program is not how certification is given instead it is given based on the amount of time spent as an operating surgeon.
There are also board certified tests that have to be passed in order to become a surgeon. Finding a surgeon that specializes in cardiothoracic procedures is typically done through referrals unless there is an emergency situation that arises in which case these surgeons are not typically met until after the surgery has occurred.
Heart conditions can lead to open heart surgery, when the lungs are involved a cardiothoracic procedure could be in order. The surgeon chosen to perform the procedure should be adequately qualified. When going through a cardiothoracic surgeon residency the resident will assist in surgical procedures before doing surgery on their own to ensure that they are ready to handle any situation that arises during the procedures. There are often a series of test run to determine if there is a need for a cardiothoracic surgeon.
The pay scale for those in the field of cardiothoracic surgery can be affected by the location, whether they work out of a private practice or hospital, and the amount of experience they have. The longer they have been performing cardiothoracic procedures the higher the pay scale. It is important to be highly skilled and there is intense training involved in order to meet surgical certification requirements. Surgeons in rural areas typically make less than those in metropolitan areas, salary ranges will also vary by country.
This surgical specialty involves the diagnosis, medically managing and surgically treating patients suffering from heart and lung diseases. Neurological damage is a major concern associated with cardiac surgery since there are instances of strokes occurring during the procedures. There is also an increased risk of having a stroke with patients that had risk factors for strokes before having the surgery.
When cardiothoracic surgery is recommended it is vital to know the background of the surgeon that is chosen including education, experience and success rate. The surgeon should be willing to answer any questions and address any concerns that may be had in connection with both the procedure and recovery process. Follow up visits should be discussed with the surgeon before surgery is schedule. It is helpful to go over the scenarios
A cardiothoracic surgeon should have completed all educational requirements, passed the exams for board certification and have necessary surgical experience in order to practice. The risks associated with cardiothoracic surgery have been reduced as new precautions and techniques have been put into place making the surgery less dangerous than it was in the past although it is still a critical procedure. A complete medical history will have to be given in order to ensure that every possible precaution is taken and the best care possible is received by patients.