Dr. Luis Castro, Heart Valve Surgeon

Hello! My name is Dr. Luis Castro and I am a cardiac surgeon having graduated from Stanford School of Medicine in 1984. To date, I have performed approximately 5,000 cardiac surgeries, of which 3,000 involved heart valve procedures. I regularly perform surgery at hospitals including Sequoia Hospital Heart and Vascular Institute. Read more...

37 Patient Reviews for Dr. Castro

"If I was to need valve surgery again, there would be no doubt I would only want Dr. Castro leaving his fingerprints on my heart."

-- Shelly Gould, Mitral Valve, Valve Repair, 10/14/2011

"I had aortic valve replacement in September of 2014 performed by Dr. Castro. I have had an outstanding experience which I would like to share as it may help others like me.

I was very scared of surgery which was unfortunately unavoidable. As a result, I did a lot of searching, reading and even watching the surgery on YouTube. I spoke to several doctors and surgeons as well.

The key is to find who the best surgeons for this type of surgery is, and Dr. Castro is there in the top 5-10 in the world - or at least among ones I could find or have access too. The hospital where he and his team operate, Sequoia Hospital in Redwood City, specializes in heart surgery and is rated in top 10 or 15. (Stanford is not even in this group).

To me Dr. Castro is the best surgeon in the world! How do I justify that?

(a) He is very fast. The amount of time you spend on heart/lung machine, while your heart is stopped is very important. (the more time you spent – the more likely you will get out brain damaged). For most surgeons the time your heart is not beating is close to 1hr or more. Dr. Castro did mine in 29 minutes (his average is 30min). I heard the fastest he did is 17 minutes.

(b) Second important point is the team. Dr. Castro has been 15 years at Sequoia and he and his team can read each other’s mind. To be that fast, one needs a good team, and Dr. Castro has that. He is very much liked by his team, his nurses and hospital staff. They love him and this is very important too.

(c) Dr. Castro’s mortality rate in the last 3 years is ZERO. He would not undertake any new procedure unless it has zero mortality rate. He cares about that. Thus, you can be sure that he does not want to ruin his record, so you will be fine. However, the week I was released he operated on 89 year old lady changing both valve: aortic and mitral. This is confidence!

(d) He is very calm and (I heard never loses his temper under pressure). This is very important if things go wrong.

(e) He is not overworked or over-committed, by his choice. He operates Tuesdays and Thursdays, so he is fresh and rested for your surgery. The rest of the days he is seeing patients in the hospital and he and his team were at my bedside every day I was there.

(f) His two anesthesiologists (Dr. Bradly and Dr. Paris) are the two angels. They were extremely important to me as I was not going to go into this surgery, neither willingly (nor alive). They will talk to you, calm you down and suddenly – you wake up - and it is all over!

(g) The care after surgery works very well in Sequoia. I slept most of the time and every time I woke up, I felt stronger. The nurses would take good care of you and I would recommend that you do not have visitors – they may tire you (that may apply even to your wife or husband). You do not need them as you will be totally taken care off by the excellent staff of nurses.

(h) The incision Dr. Castro made is quite small – about 4” and the scar is not very visible. To me this is unimportant, but if you are a lady and care for it – he does a great job with that too.

Finally, Dr. Castro is very approachable, down to earth and very charming. Once you meet him, your heart will tell you: “stop, do not look any further – I want this guy!” He will call you back personally, answer your email and I suspect, if you ask him to give you a ride home from the hospital – he will do it. But please do not! Many people need him critically, so be respectful of his time.

My recovery was fantastic. I heard from Dr. Castro that some people went to meetings 3 weeks after the surgery. The normal recovery time is 6 weeks.

I went to work in 1 week! (not that I did much, but I made the point) However the day after I worked 3 hrs, second week part time, third week overtime and in the fourth week I even picked up another consulting job. (my work is desk / computer job, so not very hard). However, I hope I did beat every record in recovery time!

It has been 5 weeks since my surgery and I feel very strong, walking without getting tired and I have energy like never before. "

-- Vojin G Oklobdzija, Aortic Valve, Valve Replacement, 09/17/2014

> See 34 more patient testimonials

My Specialities & Interests

Specific to heart valve surgery, you should know that I have several specialties including:

  • Minimally invasive aortic valve and mitral valve surgery
  • Cox Maze III procedure for atrial fibrillation
  • Complex and high-risk valvular reoperations and coronary surgery

In addition, I have research and clinical interests specific to:

  • Adult congenital heart surgery
  • Surgical outcomes research
  • Quality assurance

Education, Training & Certificates

Dr. Luis Castro, heart surgeon, graduated from Stanford School of Medicine in 1984.

I am the medical director of cardiac surgery at Sequoia Hospital Heart and Vascular Institute. I practice with Dignity Health Medical Group – Sequoia Cardiovascular Surgery.

Dr. Luis Castro

Sequoia Hospital Heart and Vascular Institute
2900 Whipple Ave
Redwood City, CA 94062
(866) 330-3590

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