Vascular Rings Program

Lurie Children’s surgeons first operated on a patient with a vascular ring in 1946. In the following 75 years they pioneered several procedures to advance the methods used to correct many kinds of vascular rings. Our surgeons, in 1953, were the first in the world to successfully repair a pulmonary artery sling and continue to operate on more pulmonary artery slings than any other hospital in North America.  


The Lurie Children's Difference

Led by Osama Eltayeb, MD, attending physician in the Division of Cardiovascular-Thoracic Surgery, Lurie Children's Vascular Ring Program treats children with severe vascular rings, using innovative and proven surgical methods to relieve pressure on the trachea and esophagus. Our center has one of the largest published surgical experiences with vascular ring; currently, we have operated on more than 500 patients.  

We have pioneered procedures such as Kommerell’s diverticulum excision, along with division of an associated vascular ring, to prevent enlargement of the diverticulum over time with recurrence of symptoms of obstructed breathing or difficulty swallowing. 

What to Expect

Our multi-disciplinary approach to the diagnosis and management of vascular rings results in exceptional care that is individualized to our patients’ needs. Patients with symptoms that do not require urgent hospital-based care may be seen first as an outpatient. 

Once a physician performs a physical evaluation and additional imaging studies are ordered (if needed), patients are scheduled for elective surgery with Cardiovascular-Thoracic Surgery and ENT.

The results of vascular ring surgery are excellent – we have not had an operative mortality rate in the past 30 years and more than 90% of our patients see their symptoms resolve. 

Our Specialists

The three Lurie Children’s Heart Center attending surgeons are American Board of Thoracic Surgery-certified Thoracic and Congenital Cardiac Surgeons. They have expertise in all aspects of surgery for repair of vascular rings.

Cardiothoracic Surgeons

Osama M. Eltayeb, MD

Director, Vascular Rings Program; Director, Tracheal Reconstruction Program; Attending Physician, Cardiovascular-Thoracic Surgery; Member, Lurie Children's Surgical Foundation

Associate Professor of Surgery (Cardiac Surgery), Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine

Michael C. Mongé, MD

Surgical Director, Heart Failure/Heart Transplant Program; Attending Physician, Cardiovascular-Thoracic Surgery; Member, Lurie Children's Surgical Foundation

Associate Professor of Surgery (Cardiac Surgery), Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine

David S. Winlaw, MBBS, MD, FRACS

Division Head, Cardiovascular-Thoracic Surgery; Co-Executive Director, Heart Center; Member, Lurie Children's Surgical Foundation; Willis J. Potts, MD Founders’ Board Professorship in Surgery

Professor of Surgery (Pediatric Cardiovascular-Thoracic Surgery), Willis J. Potts Chair, Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine

Make an Appointment

To contact the Cardiovascular-Thoracic Surgery team, please call 312.227.4240.

Traveling from Out-of-State?

Our Destination Services team is available to help make your experience at Lurie Children's go as smoothly as possible. Learn more.

Second Opinions

For families or providers seeking a second opinion, we offer a Priority Second Opinion Clinic.

Request a Second Opinion

Heart Center Family Resource Guide

To help prepare families for their care with Lurie Children's Heart Center, we have compiled a list of resources about treatment and recovery. Learn how to get ready for an inpatient stay or outpatient visit, and read about our support services for patients and families.