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Cardiovascular surgery

We Have the Heart! Celebrating 20 Years of Superior Open Heart Surgical Care

If you're facing something as serious as heart surgery, you want to be close to home and family. With LRMC's opening of its surgical heart program in November 1998, a dream came true for our community. Prior to the opening of this program, patients and their families traveled to places with university hospitals or teaching facilities like Gainesville or Orlando for this type of specialized heart care.

Our cardiovascular surgery program is led by some of the most esteemed cardiovascular surgeons and most forward-thinking minds in medicine.

Supported by an advanced team of cardiac care professionals, these men and women perform open heart surgeries daily - nearly 750 every year.

With 15,000 open heart surgeries performed in the past 20 years alone, no other heart program in our area has more experience in cardiac care.

"Our cardiac care team includes cardiac anesthesiologists, perfusionists, nurses, cardiologists, primary care physicians, the Emergency Department staff, the cardiac catheterization staff, and others - all specially trained, and all working together to help people to once again have healthy hearts and productive lives." R. Duane Cook, MD

Cardiovascular anesthesiologists here often get patients off ventilators within a few hours of surgery. That's two to three times faster than many other programs. Doing so speeds up the process of getting patients through the Intensive Care Unit and home.

And our reputation for quality care has attracted some of the most talented heart specialists in the Southeast.

Our cardiac program is also associated with an increase in the recruitment of additional medical and surgical specialists to the community, creating a halo effect. As more and more medical needs are being met within the community, fewer patients are required to travel out of the area to receive the care they need.

"Our goal is to return our patients to a state of health. Many resume a totally normal life just two to three months after surgery. It's rewarding to see someone feel well after feeling tired or suffering from chest pain, sometimes for years." Robert Richardson, MD