Minimally Invasive Surgical Techniques

Minimally Invasive Heart Surgery

Advanced Cardiac Surgery techniques continue to shape and revolutionize our specialty with highly sophisticated and effective ways to treat heart disease. We are continuously evolving towards better outcomes and a minimally invasive heart surgery approach that is low impact and scarless. Our minimally invasive techniques have radically changed our patients’ heart surgery experience and postoperative recovery.

Patients who are treated with these improved minimally invasive surgical methods can now experience faster recovery times. The elderly and frail patients can often return to their homes and families in two-three days after heart surgery with very little pain and an almost invisible scar. This scar is often can be completely hidden in the skin fold under the breast.

Dr. Ciuffo knows how confusing and scary it can be if you or a loved one are confronted with the news that something needs to be done about a severe heart condition. How do you know if you are making the right decisions, and what questions should you ask your specialist to make sure you are treated with the best possible options? Dr. Ciuffo and his team have created this website to give cardiac patients and their families complete information about the minimally invasive treatment options available.

Minimally Invasive Heart Surgery Resources

About Our Site

This website has been conceived as a down-to-earth guide to help and educate anybody who needs a heart procedure and wants to know the best medical and surgical solutions available today in the treatment of cardiovascular disease.

minimally invasive heart surgery recovery

(Photo Credit: Karen Schiely/Akron Beacon Journal)

Keep reading and you will become an informed consumer with the right questions to ask. Cardiac surgery and cardiology have evolved tremendously over the last twenty years and the combined expertise of these specialties offers the best results and options ever achieved in the history of medicine. Our minimally invasive technologies and surgical solutions have opened new doors and a chance to get better even in cases who were considered inoperable by traditional and conventional methods.

Heart Surgery Experience

Over the span of Dr. Ciuffo’s extensive professional career in cardiothoracic surgery, he has had the opportunity to compare the clinical results and patients’ comfort and recovery with traditional and conventional cardiothoracic surgery techniques versus bloodless and minimally invasive heart surgery techniques.

Our center experience has shown that these new techniques allow the best clinical results. The most obvious advantages to minimally invasive heart surgery are less pain, less bleeding, less wound infections, a quicker recovery and return to a productive life style, superior cosmetic results. Learn more about Dr. Ciuffo’s minimally invasive heart surgery experience and training.

Giovanni B. Ciuffo, MD, Chief, Cardiovascular and Thoracic Surgery

Our conclusions have been corroborated by innumerable scientific articles in the surgical literature confirming these same clinical advantages. As we explore these topics, we will quote relevant bibliography for those of you who have an academic interest in this field or simply want to get more scientific information. We encourage you to send your comments or questions about this website or any scientific literature on  the advanced treatment of cardiovascular disease.

What We Do: Minimally Invasive Heart Surgery

Many heart patients and their families are intimidated and confused by the complexity of this field and find it increasingly difficult to make the right choice for themselves or their loved ones. Cardiovascular care has evolved very successfully towards new techniques and technologies.

minimally invasive heart surgery

These breakthroughs have created a new, “gentle touch” surgical experience that is now available to the vast majority of our patients by the hands of expert minimally invasive heart surgeons. Even the elderly and frail patient can enjoy the best results with a smooth and quick recovery after bypass surgery or a minimally invasive mitral valve repair or aortic valve replacement. Minimally Invasive ASD repairs and Atrial Myxoma Surgery is now routinely offered to most patients.

In most women the surgical scar can be completely hidden in the skin fold underneath the breast, with the best cosmetic results and an excellent repair of their heart problem. This type of surgery is also known as Scarless Heart Surgery. You definitely don’t need to be a movie star or a fashion model to request this type of cardiac surgery. All patients are routinely evaluated to see if they can be suitable candidates for the least invasive approach.

Why Choose Us?

For those of you who are interested in a specific heart problem, We have divided this vast subject under several headings that cover the most frequent cardiovascular pathologies. This website is designed to be user friendly and very easy to navigate. Links to relevant topics, surgical videos and pictures are available in each page. Over the years in Dr. Ciuffo’s professional practice, he has developed a simple and effective way to explain the mechanisms that cause heart disease as well as our high-tech, minimally invasive heart surgery and medical techniques to treat it.

bloodless and minimally invasive heart surgery patient, Madalyn Copcutt, with Dr. Ciuffo

Image Source: Canton Mercy Medical

You’ll find our explanations down-to-earth and filled with examples drawn from carpentry, plumbing, mechanical engineering, and more. You shouldn’t be surprised or offended by these examples. Our cardiovascular system could be simply described as a double pump (right and left side of the heart) connected to a network of pipes (veins and arteries) that allows oxygenated blood to reach and nourish every organ and cell in our body.

We will guide you step-by-step through what happens when a part of our heart system fails and what we do to diagnose the problem, then treat it with outstanding results!

You’ll be able to understand how your coronary arteries work and how a stent, an angioplasty, or minimally invasive bypass operation can relieve chest pain or save a life. You’ll find out about the pros and cons of prosthetic heart valves we can use to perform an aortic valve replacement or a mitral valve repair. We will bring you up to date on hybrid valve and coronary surgery and its role in less invasive ways to treat a variety of heart conditions.

Please, feel free to browse in any order you like. It is a work in progress. If you don’t find what you are looking for, please revisit later or contact us directly. When it comes to your health, it truly pays to be an informed consumer. There is a lot we can do to have longer and better lives.

We will gladly answer all your questions about heart disease and the most advanced surgical options to treat any heart condition. We understand and respect your concerns about minimally invasive heart surgery. It is your heart, your life, your choice.

Watch Dr.Ciuffo talk about Minimally Invasive and Bloodless Heart Surgery

This video contains earlier contact information. Please, refer to our Contact Us page for our current contact information.


Dr. Giovanni Ciuffo - Minimally Invasive Heart Surgeon
Giovanni B. Ciuffo, MD


Director, Minimally Invasive and Bloodless Heart Surgery Program

Dr. Ciuffo’s News and Articles

Find the latest on minimally invasive heart surgery from our blog!

What Changes Should I Make Before and After Heart Surgery?

No matter what stage of life you are in, healthy nutrition is important to maintain good health, prevent many diseases, feel good, and is vital for our hearts. Heart disease is the number one cause of death of women and men in the United States. If that doesn’t alarm you I don’t know what will. If heart surgery is on the horizon for you, you can prepare with some lifestyle changes and know what needs to change once you are in recovery.  Changes to Make Before Heart Surgery Quit smoking because it inhibits the body’s ability to heal.  If you have diabetes be sure to keep your blood sugars well controlled. High blood sugar also makes it hard for our bodies to heal.  You want to have quality nutrition before entering surgery. Our bodies get stressed when we are sick or have surgeries, so it is important to have good nutrition before surgery to help you heal faster after your surgery is completed. If your normal routine is healthy then don’t change your system. If you notice you’ve had a poor diet and haven’t been eating normally and have lost some weight, try finding foods and drinks you can have that will give you the calories you need. You don’t want to be losing weight and on a strict diet before surgery.  Changes to Make After Heart Surgery After your surgery, you will again want to be having good nutrition. After a major surgery, your body will need more protein and enough calories to recover. Sometimes this is hard to achieve because of certain medications you are consuming.  If...

Disadvantages of Minimally Invasive Heart Surgery

Minimally invasive heart surgery utilizes healthcare professionals in cardiac, surgery, cardiac anesthesiologist, perfusionist, assistants, and nurses in the operating room. Each professional brings their specialized and unique expertise which is important to ensure the best possible outcome for the patient. There are some disadvantages to consider when looking into minimally invasive heart surgery. There are also some great advantages.  Disadvantages of Minimally Invasive Heart Surgery Not Everyone is a Candidate To be a candidate for minimally invasive surgery you have to have a blocked or diseased vessel on the left side of the heart only. Or a requirement can be you had not previously had bypass surgery as well as no preexisting scar tissue on the heart or chest. A disadvantage of minimally invasive heart surgery is not everyone is a good candidate for the procedure. Surgeons are researching new ways to apply the surgery so overtime more and more people will be able to benefit from the procedure.  Long Time in the Operating Room  Another disadvantage of Minimally Invasive Heart Surgery is the surgery takes a longer time in the operating room.  Advantages of Minimally Invasive Heart Surgery Shorten Recovery Time  There is a smaller incision during minimally invasive surgery, which means there is less of a wound to heal. When less healing is needed, your body can heal quickly and reduce the recovery period from four to eight weeks with conventional open surgery to two to four weeks with minimally invasive surgery. There will also be less pain and the incision will go away more quickly because of the smaller incision. This allows for the advantage of...