Complex Procedures, Successful Results

ilustration of heart

Duke’s Pediatric and Congenital Heart Center, a team of highly skilled pediatric heart surgeons, cardiologists, anthesiologists, pediatric and neonatal intensivists, nurses, and adult congenital heart diseases specialists, has exceeded national outcome metrics and experienced unprecedented growth.


Offering a broad range of pediatric heart surgeries, Duke is dedicated to achieving the best outcomes for children of all ages. In 2018, our team performed 530 congenital cardiac surgeries — the highest volume in Duke Heart history.


Exceptional Results in the Most Challenging Surgical Cases

The center exceeded national mortality rates by nearly 2 percent in more than 300 index cases, according to data from the Society of Thoracic Surgeons (STS). In nearly 100 high complexity cases, Duke's mortality outcomes were four times below national rates.

Peds Surgery Outcomes Chart


We are staffed and prepared to provide the most innovative response to the highest risk challenges in pediatric and congenital heart care. Our development of the novel all-region perfusion technique for the Norwood operation and arch reconstruction contributes to our success. As our outcomes earn national recognition, we attract increasingly complex referrals that allow us to help more of these young patients and their families.
Joseph W. Turek, MD, PhD, Chief of Duke’s Pediatric Cardiac Surgery Program

Experience and Innovation Lead to Growth

Duke pediatric cardiac surgeons are experienced in the full range of pediatric heart surgeries. They perform – and in some cases have pioneered – the latest techniques including all-region perfusion for the Norwood procedure and aortic arch reconstruction. 


  • Performed the first aortic valve ring annuloplasty repair in pediatric patients, becoming a center of excellence for this procedure
  • New minimally invasive approaches for adolescents and adult congenital cardiac surgery patients, including video-assisted lead placement, pulmonary valve replacement, partial anomalous venous return repair, and anomalous coronary procedures
  • Mechanical circulatory support including VAD and ECMO
  • Biventricular repair and conversion for select patients with single-ventricle heart disease
  • Adult Congenital Heart Surgery Center of Excellence
  • Ground-breaking translational research for pediatric heart and thymus co-transplantation for immune tolerance associated with heart transplantation