Cardiothoracic Surgery | Cardiothoracic Surgery

Cardiothoracic Surgery

Raising the Bar of Excellence

For close to a half century Trinity Health has set the standard in quality heart care, with new technologies, innovative procedures and services that target the full scope of cardiovascular medicine.

Trinity Health offers comprehensive cardiothoracic services aimed at preventing, diagnosing, treating and recovering from cardiovascular disease.

Cardiovascular Services

Heart disease is the leading cause of death and disability in North Dakota.
Congestive heart failure, hypertension (high blood pressure), peripheral vascular disease and arteriosclerosis (narrowing or hardening of the arteries) are various types of conditions that lead to heart problems.

Patients with cardiovascular conditions benefit from the expertise of a highly experienced team, which includes:

  • Board-certified cardiologists
  • Board-certified cardiothoracic and vascular surgeons
  • Nurses with cardiovascular expertise
  • Exercise physiologists
  • Cardiac Rehabilitation Specialists

For close to a half century our heart specialists have set the standard for quality care, introducing new technology and many "firsts," including the first angiogram, placement of the first stent, and the first angioplasty performed in our region. Trinity's long-standing tradition of excellence and leadership in cardiac care continues into the 21st Century.


Valve Disease

Four valves – aortic, mitral, pulmonary and tricuspid – open and close with each heartbeat to keep blood flowing in the right direction. When a valve fails to open or close properly, the flow is disrupted.
Our heart team performs a wide range of valve repair and replacement procedures, some using minimally invasive methods that mean faster recovery with less pain for the patient.

Cardiac Arrhythmias

The heart operates as a perfectly synchronized pump thanks to its electrical system. However, trouble occurs if the heart beats too fast (tachycardia) or too slowly (bradycardia).
Atrial Fibrillation (A-fib) is the most common form of irregular heartbeat and the most under-treated form of heart disease. A-fib causes 25% of all strokes.

Arrhythmia/A-fib Treatments

  • • Lifestyle change
  • • Antiarrhythmic or anticoagulant drugs
  • • Electrical devices, such as pacemaker or ICD
  • • Electrical energy directed to the trouble point (ablation)

  • Surgical Interventions

  • • Maze procedure – A surgical form of ablation, Maze involves scoring heart tissue to block the abnormal impulses.

Coronary Artery Disease (CAD)

Balloons & Stents

  • Trinity Health’s team of cardiologists have performed thousands of angioplasty and stent procedures to restore blood flow when medications or lifestyle changes aren’t sufficient.
  • Bypass Surgery

  • During coronary artery bypass surgery the surgeon harvests a section of artery or vein and grafts it to a coronary artery, bypassing the blockage and restoring blood flow. Thoracic (mammary) artery grafts have become the standard of care due to their longevity.

Heart Failure

Heart failure simply means that the heart is no longer able to pump a sufficient amount of blood to meet the body’s needs. Heart failure can be managed with medications and electrical devices and by:
  • • Controlling blood pressure
  • • Monitoring symptoms
  • • Maintaining healthy weight
  • • Heart-healthy lifestyle


Trinity Health has had many "firsts," including the first angiogram, placement of the first stent, and the first angioplasty performed in our region.

CardioHelp: A First for North Dakota

Trinity Health is proud to be the first North Dakota hospital to offer CardioHelp, the world’s first portable heart & lung support system. The ultimate lifesaver, CardioHelp can get you or a family member through a cardiac crisis, making emergency transport or the next phase of treatment possible.

Recovery and Follow-up

Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation

Heart Graphic

Signs & Symptoms

  • • Chest discomfort. Most heart attacks involve discomfort in the center of the chest that lasts more than a few minutes, or that goes away and comes back. It can feel like uncomfortable pressure, squeezing, fullness or pain.
  • • Discomfort in other areas of the upper body. Symptoms can include pain or discomfort in one or both arms, the back, neck, jaw or stomach.
  • • Shortness of breath with or without chest discomfort.
  • • Other signs may include breaking out in a cold sweat, nausea or lightheadedness.

If you are experiencing any of these symtoms, call 911.

For more information about Trinity Health's Heart Services, please call:
Cardiology at:
  (701) 857-7388
Cardiothoracic Surgery at:
  (701) 857-3655
Cardiopulmonary Rehab (Outpatient) at:
  (701) 857-2338
Pacemaker Clinic at:
  (701) 857-7802
Or toll-free at:

For a free DVD on Heart Attack Warning Signs, call 857-5643

Cardiothoracic Surgical Procedures:

  • • Aortic surgery
  • • Heart valve repair/replacement
  • • Coronary bypass
  • • Minimally invasive procedures

Cardiovascular Services:

  • • Arrhythmia management
  • • Treatment for Heart failure
  • • Interventional cardiology and angioplasty
  • • Noninvasive cardiac imaging
  • • Preventive cardiology
  • • Vascular medicine
  • • Pacemaker clinic//Implanted Cardioverter Defibrillator clinic
  • • Coronary stenting
  • • EECP/Enhanced External Counter Pulsation therapy

Test and Procedures for Diagnosing Cardiac Disorders include:

  • • Stress testing, including Cardiolyte
  • • Heart imaging
  • • Electrocardiogram (EKG)
  • • Holter monitoring
  • • Echocardiogram
  • • Angiogram, including renal (kidneys) and abdominal aorta
  • • King of Hearts/24-hour monitoring
  • • Tilt Table

 Providers in this field:
 (hover or click to view more details)

Caitlin Hylton AG ACNP, BC

A member of Trinity Health's Cardiothoracic Surgery team, Caitlin M. Hylton, AGACNP-BC, is an Ad --More--

Martin Rothberg MD

Dr. Martin Rothberg first joined Trinity Health's heart surgery team in 1992. He completed resid --More--

C. Etta Tabe MD

Certified by the American Board of Thoracic Surgery and the American Board of Surgery, Dr. Tabe is a --More--