beth israel deaconess medical center a harvard medical school teaching hospital

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Cardiac Anesthesia

The Division of Cardiac Anesthesia cares for approximately 850 patients per year with a wide diversity of cardiovascular pathology including complex valvular lesions, thoracic aortic disease requiring reconstruction, adult congenital abnormalities, and coronary artery disease. Didactic sessions dedicated to cardiac anesthesia topics occur throughout the year. All of the division's members are either certified by or are testamurs of the National Board of Echocardiography (NBE), and the division is very active in TEE-related research and education.

Resident Perspective

Cardiac anesthesia OR room with equipmentYou do one month of cardiac anesthesia during our CA-1 year, giving you early opportunities to place invasive lines, learn invasive monitoring, titrate vasoactive medications, and learn more about cardiovascular physiology. You do another month of cardiac anesthesia during the CA-2 year, and have the option of doing up to 3 months during the CA-3 year. You work one-on-one with the cardiac attendings for most cases, so a lot of teaching is done in the OR. There is a very thorough online syllabus that is an invaluable resource.

Contact Information

Department of Anesthesia, Critical Care and Pain Medicine (Education Division)
Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center
East Campus, Rabb 239
330 Brookline Avenue
Boston, MA 02215
P: 617-667-3110
F: 617-667-5050

A Day in the Life

"On the day of the cases, I typically show up around 6am. The room setup involves a few more drugs than the standard setup and that takes additional time. After the room is setup, the patient's will often need 2 IVs and an A-line. The start time for cardiac cases is 15 minutes prior to regular case start time so that's important to note. One of the attendings is also doing a study that requires collection of A-line data for 15 minutes prior to rolling back to the OR, so that's also helpful to note. Your attending may be assigned one-on-one, or they may have two rooms. You will also likely have a TEE fellow that will be in the room for pre and post-bypass images and assessment. After the case is finished, most of the cases (except ICD lead extraction or EP cases) go to the ICU intubated and the techs will help you transport upstairs. After your first case, you may have another cardiac case. If not, you will likely be assigned a non-cardiac case to finish out the day if it's early in the day. It's also important to check the schedule multiple times throughout the day as the cardiac schedule often changes for emergencies, so cases can be canceled or shuffled around. Cardiac lecture occurs at 4pm on Wednesdays, otherwise you should attend the normal lectures/sim on Monday and Thursdays. ADEL has many useful resources and I recommend browsing through the documents prior to the start of the rotation."
-Rohesh Fernando, Class of 2015