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Gosta Pettersson, MD, PhD


Gosta Pettersson, MD, PhD
Department: Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery
Surgical Director, Adult Congenital
Location: Cleveland Clinic Main Campus
Mail Code J4-1
9500 Euclid Avenue
Cleveland, OH 44195
Gosta Pettersson, MD, PhD
Department: Pediatric Institute
Location: Cleveland Clinic Main Campus
Mail Code J4-1
9500 Euclid Avenue
Cleveland, OH 44195
Gosta Pettersson, MD, PhD
Department: Transplantation Center
Location: Cleveland Clinic Main Campus
Mail Code J4-1
9500 Euclid Avenue
Cleveland, OH 44195
Type of Doctor:
Both Adults and Children & Adolescents

Biographical Sketch

Gosta Pettersson, MD, PhD, is Vice Chairman of the Department of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery and Section Head, Congenital Heart Surgery at The Sydell and Arnold Miller Family Heart & Vascular Institute at Cleveland Clinic. He is board certified by the European Board of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery.

Specialty interests: Congenital heart surgery in adults and children, acquired heart disease (including aneurysms of the thoracic aorta), reconstructive valve surgery, heart and lung transplantation, reoperations, endocarditis, complex coronary artery surgery, aortic and mitral valve repair and replacement (including homografts and the Ross procedure).

Number of Procedures Performed: Dr. Pettersson has performed approximately 15,000 surgeries throughout his career. Each year, he performs 425 of Cleveland Clinic’s 4,000 heart surgeries. Of these, approximately 250 are to repair the aortic valve or root. Many of Dr. Pettersson’s patients have had previous heart surgery, and more than 50 patients have had four or more prior surgeries. Repeat surgeries (reoperations) are more challenging than first-time procedures.

Success rates: Among top U.S. hospitals for cardiac surgery, Cleveland Clinic surgeons perform the greatest number of cardiac surgeries and have the best quality outcomes. Success rates for specific procedures are available at

Education and Training: Dr. Pettersson is a native of Sweden. He received his medical training at the University of Gothenburg, where he also studied for his PhD and completed his thesis. After finishing a clinical and research fellowship in the Department of Surgery at the University of Illinois College of Medicine in Chicago, Dr. Pettersson served as a Staff Surgeon in the Department of Thoracic Surgery at Sahlgrenska University Hospital in Gothenburg, Sweden. Dr. Pettersson then became a Professor of Thoracic Surgery at the University of Copenhagen and Chief Surgeon in the Department of Cardiothoracic Surgery at the State University Hospital, Rigshospitalet in Copenhagen. In 1998, he was Chief Surgeon at the Private Hospital Hamlet in Copenhagen. He was appointed "expert" in matters concerning cardiothoracic surgery, including heart and lung transplantation, by medical authorities in Sweden and Denmark. He is licensed to practice medicine in Sweden, Denmark, Norway, the United Kingdom and the United States.

Publications and Speaking: Dr. Pettersson has received numerous awards and has held guest professorships in China, the United States (Boston, Albany) and Romania. Dr. Pettersson is an extensively published expert on the Ross procedure, surgical treatment of endocarditis, and lung transplantation. Among his more than 200 published works are book chapters, journal articles, abstracts and scientific papers on a variety of topics related to his specialty interests. He served as Chairman of the Endocarditis Working Group of the International Society for Chemotherapy, a group of leading surgeons that designs recommendations for the surgical treatment of patients with endocarditis.

Dr. Pettersson has presented many national and international lectures on topics ranging from bronchial artery revascularization in patients who have lung and heart-lung transplant procedures, surgical treatment of endocarditis, reoperations, to the use of biologic tissue in the treatment of patients with aortic valve disease. He has served on the OPTN/UNOS Thoracic Organ Transplantation Committee for Region 10.

Dr. Pettersson is the co-author of “Du har rort ved mit hjert” (English: You Have Touched my Heart), which was translated into English in 2009 with a supportive grant from Peter and Elizabeth C. Tower. This book features dialogues between Dr. Pettersson and his former patient, Johannes Mollehave, a priest in the Danish National Church as well as an author, TV personality, popular speaker and one of the best known and most beloved figures in contemporary Denmark. Mr. Mollehave is also a native of Sweden, and Dr. Pettersson developed a friendship with him the year before the surgery when Mr. Mollehave was invited to the hospital to address the staff on humanistic medicine. The book, originally published in 2005, was a best-seller in Denmark with an estimated 100,000 copies sold.

About Dr. Pettersson: “I enjoy my field of practice and focusing on giving people hope, especially in complex reoperation cases. I appreciate having something to give in order to make a difference in people’s lives.”

Leisure Activities: When time permits, Dr. Pettersson enjoys skiing, hunting and horseback riding.

Professional Highlights

  • Peter and Elizabeth C. Tower and Family Endowed Chair in Cardiothoracic Research
  • Honorary Member, Finnish Surgical Society
  • Honorary Member, Lithuanian Thoracic Surgery Society
  • Honorary Member, Romanian Scientific Society

Education & Fellowships

Fellowship - Sahlgrenska University Hospital
Thoracic Surgery
Fellowship - University of Illinois College of Medicine
General/Thoracic Surgery-Research
Chicago, IL USA
Residency - Sahlgrenska University Hospital
General Surgery
Internship - Sahlgrenska University Hospital
Medical School - Gothenburg University

Specialty Interests

Adult and pediatric congenital heart surgery; aortic valve repair and preservation (including remodeling and reimplantation) and replacement (including homograft and Ross procedure); surgery for acquired heart and aortic diseases, including multiple reoperations; surgical treatment of patients with endocarditis; and lung and heart/lung transplantation

Awards & Honors

  • 2007 - Peter and Elizabeth C. Tower and Family Endowed Chair in Cardiothoracic Research, Miller Family Heart & Vascular Institute

  • 2010 – Bruce Hubbard Stewart Memorial Award for Humanistic Medicine, Cleveland Clinic

  • 2013 - Master Clinician Award, Cleveland Clinic, Innovations & Patents, bronchial artery revascularization in lung transplantation

  • Honorary Member, Finnish Surgical Society

  • Honorary Member, Lithuanian Thoracic Surgery Society

  • Honorary Member, Romanian Scientific Society

  • Bruce Hubbard Steward Award for Humanistic Medicine 

Innovations & Patents

Bronchial artery revascularization in lung transplantation


  • American Association for Thoracic Surgery
  • Society of Thoracic Surgery
  • European Association for CardioThoracic Surgery
  • American Medical Association
  • Society for Heart Valve Disease
  • Congenital Heart Surgeon Society
  • International Society of Heart and Lung Transplant
  • International Society of Cardiothoracic Surgeons 
  • American Transplant Society
  • Scandinavian Association for Thoracic Surgery 
  • The Ross Society
  • European Congenital Heart Surgeons

Treatment & Services

Specialty in Diseases and Conditions

Industry Relationships

Cleveland Clinic physicians and scientists may collaborate with the pharmaceutical or medical device industries to help develop medical breakthroughs or provide medical expertise or education. Cleveland Clinic strives to make scientific advances that will benefit patient care and support outside relationships that promise public benefit. In order for the discoveries of Cleveland Clinic physicians' and scientists' laboratories and investigations to benefit the public, these discoveries must be commercialized in partnership with industry. As experts in their fields, Cleveland Clinic physicians and scientists are often sought after by industry to consult, provide expertise and education.

To assure professional and commercial integrity in such matters, Cleveland Clinic maintains a program that reviews these collaborations and, when appropriate, puts measures in place to minimize bias that may result from ties to industry. Cleveland Clinic publicly discloses the names of companies when (i) its physicians/scientists receive $5,000 or more per year (or, in rare cases, equity or stock options) for speaking and consulting, (ii) its physicians/scientists serve as a fiduciary, (iii) its physicians/scientists receive or have the right to receive royalties or (iv) its physicians/scientists hold any equity interest for the physician's/scientist's role as inventor, discoverer, developer, founder or consultant.* In publicly disclosing this information, Cleveland Clinic tries to provide information as accurately as possible about its physicians' and scientists' connections with industry.

As of 5/12/2017, Dr. Pettersson has reported no financial relationship with industry that is applicable to this listing. In general, patients should feel free to contact their doctor about any of the relationships and how the relationships are overseen by Cleveland Clinic. To learn more about Cleveland Clinic's policies on collaborations with industry and innovation management, go to our Integrity in Innovation page.

Public Health Service-Reportable Financial Conflicts of Interest. Cleveland Clinic scientists and physicians engage in basic, translational and clinical research activities, working to solve health problems, enhance patient care and improve quality of life for patients. Interactions with industry are essential to bringing the researchers’ discoveries to the public, but can present the potential for conflicts of interest related to their research activities. Click here to view a listing of instances where Cleveland Clinic has identified a Public Health Service (PHS)-Reportable Financial Conflict of Interest and has put measures in place to ensure that, to the extent possible, the design, conduct and reporting of the research is free from bias.

* Cleveland Clinic physicians and scientists subscribe to the guidance presented in the PhRMA Code on Interactions with Healthcare Professionals and the AdvaMed Code of Ethics on Interactions with Health Care Professionals. As such, gifts of substantial value are generally prohibited.

Languages Spoken

  • Danish
  • English
  • French
  • Norwegian
  • Swedish
  • Scandinavian

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