• 1
  • 2

Dr. Jeffrey D. Lee

My name is Dr. Jeffrey D. Lee 

“I chose to become a cardiovascular and thoracic surgeon because I wanted a career where I could help my fellow man in the most significant way possible.  I always consider what is best for my patients and work collaboratively with them and their families to ensure they get the best possible care.  My primary goal is to help them regain the energy and long-term health they desire.” I grew up in New York and credit my hard-working parents for instilling in me my desire to help others and my work ethic.  I honor them by caring for all my patients as if they were my own parents. I am a graduate of Cornell University and New York University School of Medicine. I completed my general surgery residency at the University of California, Los Angeles, and my cardiothoracic surgery residency at the Weill Cornell Medical Center in 1996. After completing my residency programs, I moved to Honolulu, Hawaii.   In Honolulu, I served as an Associate Clinical Professor of Surgery at the University of Hawaii School of Medicine, and had a successful private practice performing cardiovascular and thoracic surgery for over a decade. I served in major leadership positions, which included Vice Chairman of Surgery and Division Chief of Cardiothoracic Surgery.  In 2011, I decided to intensively pursue my lifelong passion for less invasive approaches to heart and vascular disease. I completed an advanced clinical fellowship in endovascular surgery in Illinois, a robotic and minimally invasive heart bypass surgery fellowship at The University of Maryland, and a robotic and minimally invasive heart valve surgery fellowship at The Cleveland Clinic. I have performed over 3500 open, robotic and minimally invasive heart surgeries in my career. I served as the Director of Robotics and Minimally Invasive Cardiac Surgery at Saddleback Memorial Medical Center in Laguna Hills, California. My special interests include robotic and minimally invasive coronary, heart valve, aortic, and arrhythmia surgery. I am also a specialist in endovascular surgery and am credentialed and routinely perform the new percutaneous Transfemoral Aortic Valve Replacement (TAVR), the Percutaneous Mitral Valve Repair (Mitraclip) and the Percutaneous Transfemoral Abdominal Aortic and Thoracic Aortic Aneurysm Repair(Endo AAA and Endo TEVAR) for the benefit of my patients. Due to my excellent patient outcomes and warm bedside manner, I was honored by my hospital in 2015 with the Patient Satisfaction Award. I welcome you to my website where I will explain to you the essentials of heart and vascular disease and current state of the art treatment.

Radio Interview Of Dr. Lee

T.V. Interview Of Dr. Lee

What is MiniHeartSurgery?

MiniHeartSurgery is a term I coined for the type of cardiac surgery I have a passion for.  I received my medical training at some of the best medical institutions in the world back in the 90s. Back then and still today, heart surgery is performed most of the time through 10-12 inch incisions splitting the breastbone all the way from top to bottom. This approach is very safe and time tested but could there be a better way?  It turns out that MiniHeartSurgery might offer a better approach for many patients needing heart surgery!  If one of our patients undergoes robotic heart surgery, we make just a few tiny ‘keyholes’ between the ribs to allow robotic arms and a tiny 3D camera access to the heart. At a nearby console, I guide the robotic instruments inside the patient’s chest and can perform the very same heart surgeries that in the past required opening the patient’s entire chest open.  If one of our patients undergoes minimally invasive heart surgery, we perform the very same heart surgeries through a small 3 inch incision.  I always seek to perform my surgeries as minimally invasively as possible, but I have one top priority, and that is patient safety. If a bigger incision is required to get the job done, I will always do what’s in the best interest of the patient. MiniHeartSurgery offers patients a comprehensive minimally invasive approach to most types of heart surgery that can benefit patients in many ways. By reducing trauma to the body, our patients often have less pain and scarring, less blood loss, less need for blood transfusions, and they can achieve a faster recovery.  MiniHeartSurgery patients can usually be back to work in 2 – 3 weeks, compared to the standard 2- 3 month recovery time required after traditional open heart surgery! What gives me the greatest satisfaction as a physician is seeing great clinical results using the robotic and minimally invasive approaches I have been specially trained in, being able to get our patients back up on their feet again as soon as possible so they can live their lives to the fullest.

Complex Open Heart Surgery

If you or one of your loved ones require open heart or vascular surgery, the benefit of seeing an experienced surgeon is the depth of knowledge and advanced capabilities he has gained over many years and 1000’s of patients.

I have been a cardiovascular and thoracic surgeon for over two decades and have performed over 3500 open, minimally invasive, and robotic heart surgeries. In addition to training at world class medical centers like NYU, UCLA, and Weill Cornell Medical Centers, I am one of the few surgeons in the country to have received specialized fellowship training at the University of Maryland and The Cleveland Clinic specifically in Robotic and Minimally Invasive Cardiac Surgery.

Although all our patients are considered for MiniHeartSurgery, unfortunately not all are candidates. Many highly complex or multiple cardiac surgical conditions still require a traditional approach to fully attend to safely and completely. Please know that my number one priority is always your safety and an excellent clinical outcome. I hope you will consider our program and look forward to seeing you in consultation.