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Phone: (319) 362-5118
Fax: (877) 894-3629

Located on Level 2
PCI Medical Pavilion

Clinic Hours
Monday - Friday: 9 am to 5 pm

Patient Forms
General Health History Form
Surgical Questionnaire 

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Cardiothoracic Surgery

For 40 years, Physicians' Clinic of Iowa cardiothoracic surgeons have been leaders in heart and lung surgery in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.

In fact, PCI’s surgeons have performed more than 13,000 open heart surgeries! From heart valve repair and replacements, to coronary artery bypasses, as well as operations for diseases of the lungs, esophagus and chest wall, trust PCI’s cardiothoracic surgical team to provide the best care in the Corridor.

Normally, cardiothoracic patients are treated by a team of medical professionals, including cardiologists, pulmonologists and, if needed, cardiothoracic surgeons. 

What do PCI cardiothoracic surgeons treat?

Coronary Heart Disease – Coronary heart disease occurs when a waxy substance called plaque builds up inside your coronary arteries. This plaque build-up is called atherosclerosis. Over time, the plaque can harden, causing restricted blood flow, or rupture, causing a blood clot that could completely block blood flow.

Coronary artery bypass grafting, performed by cardiothoracic surgeons and commonly referred to as open-heart surgery, uses arteries or veins from other areas in your body to bypass your narrowed coronary arteries.

Aortic Aneurysm- An aortic aneurysm is a bulge in a section of the aorta, the body’s main artery. Because the section with the aneurysm is weak, it can burst. Treatment depends on the location of the aneurysm and your overall health. An aneurysm in the upper chest (ascending aorta) generally is closely monitored. If it reaches a specific size, it will be then surgically repaired. Aneurysm in the lower chest or areas below your stomach may not be as serious. Your doctor will monitor these types of aneurysms; if it grows or begins causing symptoms, he/she will recommend surgery.

Cancer Care
Physicians’ Clinic of Iowa cardiothoracic surgeons provide expert surgical oncology (cancer surgery) for:

  • Lung Cancer – Often, a combination of surgery, radiation and chemotherapy are used to treat lung cancer, depending on your unique situation. Surgery is generally used to treat non-small cell lung cancer. Surgery is sometimes not an option in small cell lung cancer, unless it is in a very early stage. Usually, small cell lung cancer has spread beyond the lung when it is diagnosed, therefore it is not possible to remove it all surgically.
  • Mesothelioma – Mesothelioma is a particularly serious and aggressive form of lung cancer. While a surgical cure may not be likely, surgery may be suggested, and then followed by other treatments, such as chemotherapy and radiation.
  • Tumors of the Chest Wall, Esophagus, and Mediastinum – Tumors of the chest wall, esophagus and mediastinum (the area between your lungs where your heart, esophagus, trachea, thymus and lymph nodes are located) usually can be surgically treated if they have not metastasized and spread to other areas of the body. There are a number of diseases associated with tumors in this area of the body, so careful testing and consideration is required prior to choosing a treatment plan.
  • Esophageal resection- In this type of surgery, some or the entire esophagus is removed. The lymph nodes near the esophagus and stomach may also be removed. This treatment is generally used for early stage cancer.

By specializing in these specific areas of the body, our fellowship trained surgeons offer a high level of expertise in even the most complex cancer surgeries. They work together with PCI oncologists and the Helen G. Nassif Community Cancer Center and St. Luke's Nassif Radiation Center to provide complete treatment programs for those facing these cancers. Learn more about cancer care services at PCI

Valvular Heart Diseases – These diseases occur when there is damage or a defect in one of the heart’s four valves: mitral, aortic, tricuspid or pulmonary. Normal valve function allows blood to flow with proper force and in the right direction. Diseased valves are too narrow and hardened to open or close completely. The mitral and aortic valves are most frequently affected. The patient’ heart team, cardiologists and cardiothoracic surgeons, will monitor this condition for specific parameters and will recommend surgery at the appropriate time if necessary.

Photo Tour



Open heart surgery and minimally invasive surgery performed by Dr. Mark Barnett.

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I needed my aortic valve replaced and my aorta tightened up. This was MAJOR. Dr Levitt is the most professional person I know. Jeff Miller assisted and saw me in the room. His manor was very calming. Both of these men do unbelievable life saving procedures as calmly as I would turn on a computer. I feel I was in the best hands during my operation and my follow-up. Thank you both for saving my life. What a outstanding team I had to save my life.

-Donald - Feb, 2015


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