Cardiothoracic Surgery Training

Cardiothoracic Surgery

The specialty of cardiothoracic surgery encompasses those conditions affecting:-

  • The heart and intrathoracic great vessels
  • The lungs and trachea
  • The oesophagus
  • Other mediastinal structures
  • The chest wall
  • Subspecialty areas of cardiac surgery include transplantation and congenital cardiac surgery.

The practice of cardiothoracic surgery includes the diagnosis, pre-operative care and assessment, operative treatment and post-operative care of patients affected by the above conditions.

Currently cardiac surgery and thoracic surgery are one training programme. You will be required to decide which direction you want to take after the first 2-3 years of your training.


Recruitment into cardiothoracic surgery is by national recruitment which is organised through Wessex deanery. Recruitment opens around November with interviews in February/March each year.

There are currently two entry points into cardiothoracic surgery: ST1 and ST3

A range of useful information and essential resources for prospective trainees can be found at:…

Requirements for Entry

  • Demonstrate significant commitment to cardiothoracic surgery
  • Have acquired stage appropriate operative experience
  • Well-rounded CV with experience demonstrated in teaching, research, audit, presentations and publications

 Suggestions for gaining further information/experience

 Society of Cardiothoracic Surgery (SCTS) annual meeting –