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Cardiac, Thoracic, Transplant and Vascular Surgery

Professor Dr. med. Axel Haverich, Director of the Department of Cardiac, Thoracic, Transplant and Vascular Surgery

Professor Axel Haverich has been head of the Department of Cardiac, Thoracic, Transplant and Vascular Surgery of the MHH since 1996.

Professor Haverich was awarded the Leibniz Prize for German Scientists by the German Research Foundation (DFG) in 1995.
He is co-editor of the internationally renowned European Journal of Cardiothoracic Surgery and a member of the advisory boards of many other scientific journals.
He is the 2007-2009 Chairman of the German Society for Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery.

Countless pioneering developments in the field of cardiac, thoracic, transplant and vascular surgery are to be directly traced back to his tireless clinical and scientific work, which is devoted to a single goal:
the welfare of his patients.

Clinical Profile

We provide optimal health care because we combine the results of the latest research with our long years of clinical experience.

Unlike many other centers of cardiac surgery we are able to operate without delay on patients with acute myocardial infarction, thus minimizing any further damage to the myocardium.

Thanks to our more than twenty years of experience, we can in most cases remove old pacemaker or defibrillator electrodes without open chest surgery.
We have also developed a tissue engineered biological cardiac valve for children which grows with the patient.

Many trendsetting techniques in aortic surgery have also been developed in our department in recent decades. Today we are one of the world's leading centers in this field.

The MHH is the world's largest center for lung transplantation with more than100 transplantations every year. We are constantly improving long-term results following cardiac and lung transplantation.

Main areas of work at the Department of Cardiac, Thoracic, Transplant and Vascular Surgery:

  • Coronary surgery (ACB)
  • Surgery of heart valves
  • Surgery of congenital heart diseases
  • Pacemaker and defibrillator surgery
  • Cardiac transplantation
  • Lung transplantation
  • Aortic surgery
  • Open and endovascular surgery

Staff: 12 consultants and 28 interns

Every year, 2,600 patients are treated in 5 operating rooms with a total of 105 beds in intensive care and normal wards.

Quality assurance data from BQS GmbH confirmed the excellent quality of our health care in 2006, showing that our complication rate is significantly below the national average.


Scientific Profile

The Leibniz Research Laboratories for Biotechnology and Artificial Organs (LEBAO) were established by Professor Axel Haverich in 1996 with funds from the Leibniz prize awarded by the DFG. Many of our important scientific achievements started here, such as our tissue engineered cardiac valve.

Professor Haverich is coordinator of the excellence cluster “From Regenerative Biology to Reconstructive Therapy”, or “rebirth”, which has recently been selected for funding.

Furthermore, applications of micro- and nanotechnology in medicine are being studied in the Collaborative Research Center (SFB) “Transregio 37”.

Our research in aortic surgery has led to the development of a hybrid prosthesis that combines surgical and interventional techniques, often making subsequent operations unnecessary.
Several patents have also been granted in the field of tissue engineering of cardiovascular prostheses, such as “biological vascularized autologous matrix, or “BioVAM”, which can be used as a substitute for damaged myocardium.


Homepage Department of Cardiac, Thoracic, Transplant and Vascular Surgery