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Thoracic Surgery Residency (Minnesota)


Mayo Clinic cardiovascular surgeons Alberto Pochettino, M.D., and Richard C. Daly, M.D., in the operating room

Cardiovascular surgeons Alberto Pochettino, M.D. (right), and Richard C. Daly, M.D.

Program description

At Mayo Clinic, general thoracic surgeons and cardiovascular surgeons are members of the health care team who work to optimize the patient's condition before, during and after general thoracic and cardiac surgery. This team is specially trained to meet the patient's needs throughout their surgical experience and return home.

Mayo Clinic's general thoracic surgery practice began in 1915. Many surgical innovations still employed throughout the world were developed by general thoracic surgeons at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota.

Since 1993, Mayo Clinic has routinely surveyed its general thoracic surgery patients. Results have been consistent with 98 percent of patients saying they would return to Mayo Clinic for surgery, and 99 percent recommending Mayo Clinic to their family and friends.

Mayo Clinic's three-year Thoracic Surgery Residency offers:

  • Comprehensive exposure to a large volume of pathology and surgical cases in general thoracic surgery, surgery for adult-acquired cardiac disease and congenital cardiac disease.
  • Preoperative consultations and evaluation of all disease entities.
  • Training in an academic environment with the opportunity to publish in peer-reviewed journals and present at national specialty meetings.
  • Extensive and comprehensive didactic and problem-solving conference schedules covering each of the three disciplines of the Thoracic Surgery Residency. In addition, the conference schedules provide excellent preparation for the American Board of Thoracic Surgery examination.
  • A professional and collegial atmosphere between medical and surgical specialties in all areas of medicine.

Joint Surgery and Thoracic Surgery Program

Mayo Clinic in Minnesota offers a Joint Surgery and Thoracic Surgery Program, known as the fast-track 4+3 program, which makes residents eligible for certification through the American Board of Surgery and the American Board of Thoracic Surgery. After completing the seven years of training, the resident has comprehensive exposure to both general surgery and cardiothoracic surgery.

There are two tracks in the joint program: General thoracic surgery (GTS) and cardiovascular surgery (CVS). Positions are offered via the National Resident Matching Program to fourth-year medical students through the categorical general surgery residency match. We encourage those interested to apply to this pathway through the Electronic Residency Application Service.

Also see the General (Categorical) Surgery Residency (Minnesota).


The program fulfills the training requirements as defined by the American Board of Thoracic Surgery and is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME).


After successfully completing the program, you are eligible to take the certification examination offered by the American Board of Thoracic Surgery.

Program history

The Thoracic Surgery Residency at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minnesota, began in 1951. We anticipate that three trainees will complete this program annually.