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.
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.
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 http://my.clevelandclinic.org/heart/about-heart-vascular-institute/treatment-outcomes.aspx
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.”
When time permits, Dr. Pettersson enjoys skiing, hunting and horseback riding.