M.D., F.R.C.S.C




Dr. Vivek Rao is a Professor of Surgery at the Peter Munk Cardiac Centre, Toronto General Hospital where he is the Surgical Director of the Mechanical Circulatory Support program. He previously served as Division Head from 2011-2021. Dr. Rao completed his medical and surgical training at the University of Toronto prior to completing a fellowship in cardiac transplantation and mechanical circulatory support at New York’s Columbia-Presbyterian Hospital. In addition to performing a wide variety of cardiac surgical procedures, Dr. Rao is a recognized expert in heart failure surgery. He currently serves as a committee chair for the NIH/CIHR sponsored Cardiothoracic Surgical Trials Network.


    • Transplantation
    • End-stage heart failure
    • Mechanical circulatory support
    • Donor preservation for heart transplant
    • Clinical outcomes following aortic valve replacement

    • M.D. Toronto (1992)
    • PhD Toronto (1997)
    • Cardiac Surgery Toronto (2000)
    • Clinical Investigator Program Toronto (2000) 
    • Mechanical Circulatory Support Fellow - Columbia University, NY (2000-2001)

    • 2019 – Thoracic Surgery Foundation (TSF) Resident Research Fellowship Award Recipient
    • 2018 – Peter Munk Research Scholarship Recipient
    • 2018 – Canadian Society of Cardiac Surgeons Resident Research Award Recipient
    • 2017 – Canadian Cardiovascular Society-Bayer Resident Vascular Awards Finalist
    • 2016 – Annual Cardiology Conference Rockies Resident Research Competition Winner
    • 2016 – MACK Foundation Postgraduate Trainee Bursary Recipient
    • 2016 – Canadian Cardiovascular Society Trainee Research Award Finalist



    • Recipient Hypertonic Saline Infusion Prevents Cardiac Allograft Dysfunction. J Thorac Cardiovasc Surg 2018; 157: 615-625.
    • Effect Of Organ Donation After Circulatory Determination Of Death On Number Of Organ Transplants From Donors With Neurologic Determination Of Death. CMAJ; 2017; 189: E1206-11
    • Outflow Graft Occlusion Of The HeartMate3 Left Ventricular Assist Device. Circ Heart Fail 2017; 10
    • High Risk Cardiac Surgery As An Alternative To Transplant Or Mechanical Support In Patients With End-Stage Heart Disease. J Thorac Cardiovasc Surg 2017; 154: 517-525.
    • Increased Cyclic Guanosine Monophosphate Levels And Continuous-Flow Left Ventricular Assist Devices: Implications For Gastrointestinal Bleeding. J Thorac Cardiovasc Surg 2016; 151: 219-227
    • ORCID: 0000-0003-1920-0937



Contact Us

  • Chair: Dr. Terrence Yau
  • Divisional Program Administraton: Thanu Sabesan

Toronto General Hospital
200 Elizabeth St., 4NU-469
Toronto, On M5G 2C4
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Temerty Faculty of Medicine, University of Toronto © 2020