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Advanced Cardiac Surgery Fellowships

These 12-month, non-accredited fellowships on the adult cardiac surgery service at Northwestern Memorial Hospital offers the full complement of adult cardiac surgery provide two tracts for candidates to pursue.


The first fellowship (Structural Heart and Aortic Diseases Fellowship) focuses on complex valve surgery and heart failure, including the surgical treatment of atrial fibrillation. Each year, we perform over 500 valve and over 100 MAZE surgeries (both concomitant and stand-alone procedures). Since more than 200 of these are mitral valve repairs, this experience also provides the fellow with proficiency in repairing all forms of complex mitral pathology. In addition, we offer experience in percutaneous and trans-apical aortic valve replacement.

The second fellowship (Heart Failure, Transplantation and Mechanical Circulatory Support Fellowship) focuses on surgery for congestive heart failure. This includes ventricular assist devices and heart transplantation, as well as complex conventional surgery on low EF patients. In addition, the program is participating in several trials with innovative therapies and devices for patients with end-stage heart disease.


Clinical research opportunities are also available.

 Requirements & Eligibility

These one year fellowship programs are available for individuals seeking additional training in cardiac surgery,  who have successfully completed an ACGME-accredited Thoracic Surgery program (or equivalent) and are eligible for medical licensure in the State of Illinois.


This is a 12-month experience on the adult cardiac surgery service at Feinberg's clinical affiliate, Northwestern Memorial Hospital.

 Application Process

Please send the complete application to education coordinator, Hemali Shah , including the following:

  • CV
  • USMLE transcript
  • Three letters of recommendation
  • Certificate of Completion from U.S. or board-approved residency and/or fellowship program
  • ABTS Certification or proof of eligibility (or equivalent)
  • Visa documents (if applicable)



 Why Northwestern?

Housestaff training through McGaw Medical Center of Northwestern University provides diverse and challenging clinical experiences and world-class education located in the heart of the beautiful city of Chicago. Learn more via the links to the McGaw website below.

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Contact Us

Duc Thinh Pham, MD

Duc Thinh Pham, MD

Program Director

Faculty Profile

Hemali Shah

Program Coordinator

hemali.shah( at )


Current Fellows

Shohei Yoshida, MD

Shohei Yoshida, MD

Cardiac Surgery Residency: Osaka University
Medical School: Osaka University

Ricardo Boix Garibo, MD

Ricardo Boix Garibo, MD

Cardiac Surgery Residency: Royal College of Surgeons
Medical School: Universitat de Valencia
Ho Jin Kim, MD

Ho Jin Kim, MD

Cardiac Surgery Residency: Asan Medical Center
Medical School: Catholic University of Korea

Graduated Fellows

Andrew Fagan, MD

Current Position: Cardiac Surgeon and Intensivist, Assistant Professor - University of Manitoba

Cardiac Surgery Residency: Ross University
Medical School: Dalhousie University

Completed Fellowship: 2022

Andres Jose Tobar, MD

Current Position: CT Surgeon - Charleston Area Medical Center

Cardiac Surgery Residency: Catholic University - Chile
Medical School: University of Santiago

Completed Fellowship: 2021

David Drullinsky, MD

Current Position: Cardiac Surgeon - London Health Sciences Centre

Cardiac Surgery Residency: McGill University
Medical School: Universidad de Chile

Completed Fellowship: 2021

Jonathan Hong, MD

Current Position: Assistant Professor, Cardiac Surgery - University of Manitoba

Cardiac Surgery Residency: University of British Columbia
Medical School: University of Toronto

Completed Fellowship: 2020

Janet Ngu, MD

Current Position: Cardiac Surgery Faculty - University of British Columbia

Cardiac Surgery Residency: University of Ottawa
Medical School: University of Calgary

Completed Fellowship: 2020

Yuji Kaku, MD

Current Position: CT Surgeon - Columbia University

Cardiac Surgery Residency: Tokyo Women's Medical University
Medical School: Tohoku University - Japan

Completed Fellowship: 2019

Panayotis Vardas, MD

Current Position: Assistant Professor/Associate Program Director - CT Surgery Residency - University of Alabama Birmingham

Cardiac Surgery Residency: Indiana University
Medical School: University of Rome " La Sapienza"

Completed Fellowship: 2019

Ryo Suzuki, MD

Current Position: CT Surgeon - Stanford University

Cardiac Surgery Residency: Keio University School of Medicine - Japan
Medical School: Keio University School of Medicine - Japan

Completed Fellowship: 2019

Daniel Holloway, MD

Current Position: Clinical Assistant Professor/Cardiac Surgeon/Program Director - Cardiac Surgery Training Program - University of Calgary

Cardiac Surgery Residency: University of Calgary
Medical School: Queen's University

Completed Fellowship: 2018

Russell McElveen, DO

Current Position: CVT Surgeon - Southern Illinois Healthcare

Thoracic Surgery Fellowship: University of Mississippi
Medical School: Lake Erie College of Osteopathic Medicine

Completed Fellowship: 2018

Erik Orozco - Hernandez, MD

Current Position: Attending Surgeon/Instructor of Surgery - University of Alabama Birmingham

Cardiac Surgery Residency: Instituto Mexicano de Seguro Social
Medical School: Universidad Autonoma de Guadalajara

Completed Fellowship: 2017

Jota Nakano, MD

Current Position: Surgical Director of TAVI and HF Programs - Kurashiki Central Hospital - Japan

Cardiac Surgery Residency: Kokura Memorial Hospital - Japan
Medical School: Kyoto University

Completed Fellowship: 2016

Jennifer Higgins, MD

Current Position: Cardiac Surgeon - St. Mary's Hospital - Kitchner, Canada

Cardiac Surgery Residency: 
Medical School: KSchulich School of Medicine and Dentistry

Completed Fellowship: 2016

Stephane Leung, MD

Current Position: Cardiothoracic Surgeon - Spectrum Health

Cardiac Surgery Residency: McGill University
Medical School: McGill University

Completed Fellowship: 2015

Michael Yamashita, MD

Current Position: Cardiac Surgeon/Assistant Professor/Director of Complex Thoracic Aorti Surgery - University of Manitoba

Cardiac Surgery Residency: University of British Columbia
Medical School: McGill University

Completed Fellowship: 2015

Karen Thompson, DO

Current Position: Cardiothoracic Surgeon - University of Florida Health - Leesburg

Cardiac Surgery Residency: University Hospital of Mississippi
Medical School: Midwestern University

Completed Fellowship: 2014

Hirohisa Ikegami, MD

Current Position: Assistant Professor/Surgical Director of the Adv. Heart Failure and Transplant Program - Robert Wood Johnson Medical School - Rutgers University

Cardiac Surgery Residency: Shiga University of Medical Sciences
Medical School: Shiga University of Medical Sciences

Completed Fellowship: 2013

Emmanuel Amulraj, MD

Current Position: Cardiothoracic Surgeon - OSF Healthcare (Peoria, IL)

Cardiac Surgery Residency: Loyola University
Medical School: St. John's Medical College (Bangalore, IN)

Completed Fellowship: 2013

Larry Cohler, MD

Current Position: Cardiothoracic Surgeon - Carle BroMenn Medical Center

Cardiac Surgery Residency: University of California - San Francisco
Medical School: University of Iowa

Completed Fellowship: 2011

Kevin Richardson, MD

Current Position: Cardiothoracic Surgeon - New Mexico Heart Institute

Cardiothoracic Surgery Fellowship: Ohio State University
Medical School: Meharry Medical College

Completed Fellowship: 2011

Rony Atoui, MD

Current Position: Associate Professor / Cardiac Surgeon - Northern Ontario School of Medicine

Cardiac Surgery Residency: McGill University
Medical School: McGill University

Completed Fellowship: 2010

Truc Ly, MD

Current Position: Cardiothoracic Surgeon - Baptist Medical Center, San Antonio TX

Cardiac Surgery Residency: St. Joseph Mercy Health System
Medical School: St. George's School of Medicine - Grenada, West Indies

Completed Fellowship: 2010

Diyar Saeed, MD

Current Position: Vice Chair & Director of the MCS & Heart Transplant Program - Leipzig Heart Center - Germany

Cardiac Surgery Residency: Bad Oeynhausen Heart Center
Medical School: Sulaimani Medical School

Completed Fellowship: 2009

Soren Schenk, MD

Current Position: Cardiac Surgeon, Sana Heart Center - Cottbus

Cardiac Surgery Residency: Ludwig Maximilians University
Medical School: 

Completed Fellowship: 2009

Jacques Kpodonu, MD

Current Position: Instructor of Surgery, Harvard Medical School / Assistant Professor of Surgery - Beth Israel

Cardiac Surgery Residency: 
Medical School: University of Ghana

Completed Fellowship: 2008

Alfredo Ramirez, MD

Current Position: Cardiothoracic Surgeon - Billings, Montana

Cardiothoracic Surgery Fellowship: Rush University
Medical School: University of Iowa

Completed Fellowship: 2007

Physician-Scientist Training & Resources

We offer a wide range of resources, mentorship opportunities and formal training programs to help our residents and fellows excel as physician-scientists. Explore all of the resources and hear from housestaff who are making research a major part of their career development plans.


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