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Dr. Liao Completes 500th Robotic Heart Surgery at BSLMC


HOUSTON, TX (July 27, 2023) - Kenneth K. Liao, MD, Ph.D., Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Center's Chief of the Division of Cardiothoracic Transplantation & Circulatory Support and the Lester and Sue Smith Endowed Chair at Baylor College of Medicine, performed his 500th robotic heart surgery in early July.

Led by Dr. Liao, the team at Texas Heart Institute at Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Center is focused on using state-of-the-art robotic technology to perform minimally invasive mitral valve repair and coronary artery bypass grafting surgery. The advanced robotic technology uses 3D high-definition scope and robot-controlled fine instruments inside the chest, which allows Dr. Liao to perform precise, gentle, and complex surgical maneuvers inside the heart. The advantages of robotic cardiac surgery include very small incisions through the rib space, less blood loss, lower risk of stroke and wound infection, and quicker recovery.

“Robotic heart surgery continues to prove to be a less invasive option with faster recovery and excellent outcomes for qualifying patients,” said Dr. Liao. “Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Center, in partnership with Baylor College of Medicine and The Texas Heart Institute, continues to lead the way with this technology in Houston and across the country. Robotics is changing future heart surgery and there are many exciting possibilities to advance the technology to save even more lives.” 

Dr. Liao is among a handful of highly experienced robotic cardiac surgeons in the U.S. and the only cardiac surgeon in the Texas Medical Center using the da Vinci Robotic Surgical System to treat valve and coronary disease. His robotic cardiac surgery program at Texas Heart Institute at Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Center is ranked among best in the U.S. 

About St. Luke’s Health

St. Luke’s Health is home to 16 hospitals covering Houston, Brazos Valley, Brazosport, and Lufkin and includes Baylor St. Luke’s Medical Center, the research and teaching hospital for Baylor College of Medicine. St. Luke’s Health is also home to the Texas Heart ®Institute (THI), the top ranked heart center in Houston, and the Dan L Duncan Comprehensive Cancer Center, a nationally accredited, NCI-designated cancer center. Its integrated network of care includes more than 380 employed and 1,600 clinically aligned network providers, and more than 21,000 employees, providers, interns, and volunteers delivering high value, nationally-ranked quality care within a Christian ministry of healing. St. Luke’s Health is a member of CommonSpirit Health, a national nonprofit, Catholic health system with more than 140 hospitals covering 21 states and delivering care to more than 12.3 million patient visits annually. Learn more at

Publish date: 

Monday, July 31, 2023

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