Mayo Clinic Q&A podcast: Less pain and faster recovery with minimally invasive heart surgery

Mayo Clinic surgeons in the operating room performing robotic mitral valve surgery

Smaller incisions, less pain and faster recovery are just a few reasons minimally invasive heart surgery can be a good option for patients with heart disease.

“I would define minimally invasive heart surgery, or robotic-assisted surgery as essentially performing a standard surgical operation through smaller incisions, without going through the breastbone,” says Dr. Phillip Rowse, a Mayo Clinic cardiovascular surgeon.

Treating mitral valve disease is one example of how often robotic-assisted heart surgery is performed at Mayo Clinic. “Mayo treats about 120 cases, or more, robotically each year,” Dr. Rowse says. “We have dedicated cardiologists who are in the room performing the echo tests at the time of surgery and right afterwards.” 

In this Mayo Clinic Q&A podcast, Dr. Rowse discusses who’s eligible for this surgery and what’s involved with minimally invasive heart surgery.


Watch: Dr. Rowse discusses minimally invasive heart surgery.

Read the full transcript.


For the safety of its patients, staff and visitors, Mayo Clinic has strict masking policies in place. Anyone shown without a mask was either recorded prior to COVID-19 or recorded in a nonpatient care area where social distancing and other safety protocols were followed.

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