Keki Balsara, MD| Cardiac Surgery | MedStar Health

Keki Balsara, MD
Provider is directly employed by MedStar Health

Specialties: Cardiac Surgery

Languages: English

About me

Keki R. Balsara, MD, MBA, FACS, FACC, is Surgical Director of Heart Transplantation and Mechanical Circulatory Support at the MedStar Heart and Vascular Institute, the highest volume ventricular-assist device program in the Mid Atlantic, and Professor of Surgery at Georgetown University School of Medicine.

Dr. Balsara joins us from the Vanderbilt University Medical Center, where he served as Associate Professor of Surgery and Chief Quality and Safety Officer in the Department of Cardiac Surgery. Moreover, he was the Vice Chair of Network Surgical Strategy and Development for the Section of Surgical Sciences. He had an additional appointment at the Tennessee Valley Healthcare System. He was previously Assistant Professor of Surgery in the Division of Cardiothoracic Surgery and Surgical Director for the Cardiothoracic Surgery ICU at Washington University in St. Louis/Barnes Jewish Hospital.

As a board-certified cardiac surgeon and intensivist with nearly 10 years of experience in the field, Dr. Balsara sees patients across the entire spectrum of cardiac disease. This includes coronary artery disease, valvular heart disease, aortic pathology, and complex re-operative surgery. He has a particular interest in end-stage heart failure, heart transplantation, and mechanical circulatory support. He brings with him a wealth of experience in expanding both the donor and recipient pools for transplantation, including the use of hepatitis-C and DCD-donors, as well as broad utilization of the TransMedics® OCS™ Heart System platform and normothermic regional perfusion.

Additional clinical interests include cardiac critical care and end-of-life care. Dr. Balsara has a particular interest in quality improvement and standardization of care to improve outcomes, reduce waste, and increase access to care. In particular, he is passionate about leveraging the scale of health systems to offer a variety of cutting-edge therapies to patients from varied geographic and economic backgrounds who have previously been denied access.

His research interests have focused on expanding ways to increase the number of organs available, including the use of the TransMedics® OCS™ Heart System, identifying DCD (donor after cardiac death) donors, and the use of normothermic regional perfusion (NRP) for DCD donor organs. More recently, his research has looked at maximizing hospital-wide efficiencies, focusing on cost-containment in the operating room, an interest that goes hand-in-hand with his MBA focus on management and strategy.

Dr. Balsara received his undergraduate and medical degrees from the University of Pennsylvania. He holds a Master of Business Administration from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania. He completed an internship and residency in general surgery at the Duke University School of Medicine. In addition, he completed a post-doctoral research fellowship in end-stage heart and lung failure and a fellowship in surgical critical care at Duke. He did his cardiothoracic surgical training at the Johns Hopkins Hospital.

Dedicated to the advancement of the field of cardiothoracic surgery, Dr. Balsara is widely published and has authored more than 50 peer-reviewed articles and multiple book chapters, and has been an invited lecturer, discussant, and/or moderator for numerous national and international meetings. He is also committed to teaching medical students and residents, cultivating the next generation of healthcare leaders.

He is a member of the International Society for Heart and Lung Transplantation, American College of Surgeons, Society of Thoracic Surgeons, Southern Thoracic Surgical Association, American Heart Association, American College of Cardiology, and American College of Healthcare Executives.

Dr. Balsara is an Ad Hoc reviewer for multiple publications, including Allergy – The European Journal of Allergy and Immunology, Journal of Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery, Annals of Thoracic Surgery, Journal of Heart Failure, Artificial Organ Research and Development ASAIO Journal.

Philosophy of care

“All too often people think of surgeons as the doctors who just show up to the operating room when, in fact, I think performing surgery is but one of our tasks. Yes, I am a surgeon. But fundamentally, my job is to provide the appropriate guidance, counsel, and support to help my patients understand their diagnosis, treatment options, and prognosis so that, together, we can choose what’s best for them and their families.

“There’s no one size fits all approach to what we do. In order to make the best treatment recommendations, I take the time to get to know my patients, listen to their treatment goals, and answer all of their questions. My goal for each patient is to provide the best quality of life for the longest time possible. Ultimately, I’m guided and motivated to do what’s in each person’s best interest.

“I’m honest and straightforward with my patients. I owe them that. I have been on the receiving end of difficult healthcare conversations and, therefore, I firmly believe in honesty and transparency. The only way that my patients can make the best treatment decisions for themselves is to have a realistic idea of their situation, as terrifying as it may feel."

Clinical areas of focus

  • Aneurysm Of Ascending Aorta
  • Aortic Aneurysm
  • Aortic Arch Aneurysm
  • Aortic Valve Surgery
  • Coronary Artery Bypass Surgery
  • Minimally Invasive Cardiac Surgery
  • Mitral Valve Replacement
  • Reoperative Cardiac Surgery
Show More

Conditions and procedures

Conditions I treat

  • Advanced Heart Failure (AHF)
  • Aneurysm Of Ascending Aorta
  • Aortic Aneurysm
  • Aortic Arch Aneurysm
  • Aortic Stenosis
  • Aortic Ulcer
  • Aortic Valve Sclerosis
  • Chest Wall Disorder
  • Collapsed Lung
  • Contusion Of Chest Wall
  • Double Aortic Arch
  • Idiopathic Hypertrophic Subaortic Stenosis
  • Infiltrative Disorders Of The Heart
  • Ischemic Cardiomyopathy
  • Loeys Dietz Syndrome
  • Lung Contusion
  • Malignant Effusion
  • Marfan Syndrome
  • Maternal Valvular Disease
  • Mediastinitis
  • Mitral Regurgitation
  • Mitral Valve Prolapse
  • Mitral Valve Stenosis
  • Myocardial Bridge
  • Pectus Carinatum
  • Pectus Excavatum
  • Pericardial Effusion
  • Pleural Effusion
  • Pneumothorax
  • Rheumatic Mitral Stenosis
  • Rib Fracture
  • Rupture Of Papillary Muscle
  • Sternal Fracture
  • Thoracoabdominal Aneurysm
  • Tracheoesophageal Fistula
  • Tricuspid Stenosis
  • Tricuspid Valve Disease
  • Valvular Endocarditis
Show All Show Less

Procedures I perform

  • Abdominal Aneurysm Repair
  • Aortic Root Replacement
  • Aortic Valve Replacement
  • Aortic Valve Surgery
  • Atrial Septal Defect (ASD) Repair
  • Balloon Catheter
  • Bloodless Cardiac Surgery
  • Convergent Procedure
  • Coronary Artery Bypass Surgery
  • Correction Of Pectus Deformity
  • Cryoablation
  • Embolectomy
  • Endoscopic Surgery
  • Epicardial Lead Placement
  • Extracorporeal Membrane Oxygenation
  • Heart Transplant
  • Intra Aortic Balloon Pump
  • Left Atrial Appendage Closure
  • Median Sternotomy
  • Mediastinoscopy
  • Minimally Invasive Aortic Valve Replacement
  • Minimally Invasive Atrial Septal Defect (ASD) Closure
  • Minimally Invasive Cardiac Surgery
  • Minimally Invasive Coronary Bypass Surgery
  • Minimally Invasive Mitral Valve Repair
  • Mitral Valve Repair
  • Mitral Valve Replacement
  • Off Pump Coronary Artery Bypass
  • Paravalvular Leak Repair
  • Patent Foramen Ovale Closure
  • Pericardiocentesis
  • Pericardiotomy
  • Pleurodesis
  • Pleurx Catheter Insertion
  • Prosthetic Heart Valves
  • Pulmonary Thromboendarterectomy
  • Pulmonic Valve Replacement
  • Reoperative Cardiac Surgery
  • Repair Of Diaphragm
  • Replacement Of Heart Valve
  • Robotic Thoracic Surgery
  • Septal Myectomy
  • Surgical Ablation Of Atrial Fibrillation
  • Thoracic Aneurysm Repair
  • Thoracic Endovascular Aortic Repair
  • Thrombectomy
  • Total Endoscopic Coronary Artery Bypass Grafting
  • Transcatheter Aortic Valve Replacement (TAVR)
  • Tricuspid Valve Repair
  • Tube Pericardiostomy
  • Valvuloplasty
  • Ventricular Assist Device
Show All button Press enter to expand Show Less

Practice locations

Distance from Change LocationEnter your Location

110 Irving Street Northwest
Floor 1
Washington, DC, 20010


Fax 202-877-3503

Get Directions

miles away

Fax 202-877-3503


MedStar Health accepts most major health insurance plans. If you are uncertain as to whether your individual health insurance plan is accepted at MedStar Health, please call your insurance company.

  • List of insurance plans we accept
    • Virginia Premier
    • Veterans Affairs Community Care Network
    • UnitedHealthcare Individual Exchange Plans
    • United Community Plan - Maryland Health Choice Program
    • Uniformed Services Family Health Plan (USFHP)
    • Private Health Care Systems (PHCS) (PPO)
    • Priority Partners - Maryland Health Choice
    • Police and Fire Clinic
    • United Optimum Choice Preferred (POS) & OCI Direct (HMO)
    • United Optimum Choice
    • United Navigate
    • United Group Medicare Advantage Plans
    • United AARP Medicare Complete
    • Traditional Medicare Fee for Service
    • Medicaid - Virginia
    • Medicaid - Maryland
    • Medicaid - District of Columbia
    • Tricare for Life East
    • Tricare Reserve Select
    • Tricare East Select
    • Tricare East Prime
    • Maryland Point of Service Plan (MPOS)
    • HealthyBlue PPO
    • Federal Employee Program (Std/Basic PPO/Blue Focus)
    • CareFirst NASCO
    • CareFirst MedStar Select PPO
    • CareFirst MedStar PPO
    • CareFirst Maryland Indemnity or PPO
    • CareFirst Group Medicare Advantage prescription drug benefit (PPO)
    • CareFirst Group Medicare Advantage
    • CareFirst BC/BS Advantage Core/Enhanced
    • CareFirst Blue Card Program (Out-of-area BCBS plans)
    • CareFirst Administrators
    • CareFirst (NCA) Indemnity
    • Carefirst BlueChoice Opt Out Plus Open Access (POS)
    • Carefirst Healthy Blue (HMO/POS)
    • Carefirst BlueChoice Opt Out Open Access
    • Carefirst BlueChoice Open Access
    • Carefirst BlueChoice HMO
    • Carefirst EPO
    • Carefirst Blue Preferred PPO
    • Aetna Medicare Advantage HMO & PPO Plans
    • Innovation Health: Open POS Plus
    • Innovation Health: Open POS II
    • Aetna Managed Choice Open Access (POS)
    • Aetna Choice POS & Choice POS II
    • Innovation Health: POS Plus
    • Aetna Managed Choice (POS)
    • Innovation Health: POS
    • Aetna Open HMO/Open HMO Option/Open EPO Plus
    • Aetna HMO-Open Access/Select OA
    • Aetna HealthFund/Health Network Option OA
    • Innovation Health: HMO & EPO Plus
    • Aetna Select HMO/HealthFund/Health Network
    • Aetna HMO
    • Innovation Health: Open Network Only Plus
    • Aetna Elect Choice/ Open Access (POS)
    • Innovation Health: Network Only Plus
    • Aetna Elect Choice/ EPO (Aetna Health Fund)
    • Cigna TotalCare (HMO D-SNP)
    • Cigna Preferred Medicare
    • Cigna Alliance Medicare (HMO) |
    • Cigna Achieve Medicare (HMO C-SNP)
    • Veterans Affairs Community Care Network (VA CCN)
    • United Medicare Advantage DSNP District of Columbia
    • United Student Resources
    • United Select Plus (POS)
    • United Select HMO - EPO/NPP
    • United Options (PPO) (includes Empire PPO)
    • United Golden Rule
    • United GEHA (for all other states) Compass Rose
    • D-SNP)
    • I-SNP
    • United Nursing Home Plan (C-SNP
    • United Erickson Advantage Plans
    • United Choice Plus
    • United Choice
    • United Mamsi Life & Health
    • United Core Essential (HMO)
    • MedStar Family Choice DC Healthy Families
    • MedStar Family Choice DC Healthcare Alliance
    • United MD IPA Preferred (POS)
    • United MD IPA (HMO)
    • Kaiser Permanente Signature-Added Choice
    • Kaiser Signature
    • Kaiser HMO Plus and DHMO Plus Member
    • Kaiser Select-Added Choice
    • Kaiser Select
    • Kaiser Medicare Plus
    • Kaiser Medicare Advantage Signature and Select
    • Kaiser Flexible Choice
    • Kaiser Maryland Medicaid MCO
    • HumanaChoice PPO
    • HumanaChoice Honor’s plan PPO
    • Health Services for Children with Special Needs (HSCSN)
    • Cigna True Choice Plus Medicare (PPO)
    • Cigna True Choice Medicare (PPO)
    • Cigna POS/Network POS
    • Cigna Indemnity
    • Cigna POS Open Access & Open Access Plus
    • Cigna Network Open Access
    • Cigna HMO Open Access
    • Cigna PPO and PPO Plus
    • Cigna EPO
    • Cigna Choice Fund PPO
    • Choice Care Network/HUMANA (PPO)
    • AmeriHealth Caritas DC Healthy Families
    • AmeriHealth Caritas DC Healthcare Alliance
    • Amerigroup DC Healthy Families
    • Amerigroup DC Alliance
    • Innovation Health: Indemnity
    • Aetna Traditional Choice (PPO)
    • Aetna Student Health Insurance
    • Aetna Signature Administrator PPO/TPA
    • Aetna Quality Point of Service (POS)
    • Innovation Health: PPO
    • Aetna Open Choice (PPO)
    • Cigna HMO & Network (HMO)
    • WellPoint Maryland - Maryland Health Choice
    • WellPoint Maryland
    • MedStar Family Choice - Maryland Health Choice
    • Coventry Health Care National Network PPO
    • First Health PPO
    • Coventry of Delaware HMO/PPO
    • Coventry Health Care of Virginia
    • Great-West Healthcare POS/CIGNA


Board Certification: American Board of Surgery, Surgical Critical Care

Board Certification: American Board of Surgery, Surgery

Graduate Education: University of Pennsylvania (2019)

Fellowship Program: Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine (2014)

Fellowship Program: Duke University Medical Center (2011)

Residency Program: Duke University Medical Center (2010)

Medical School: University of Pennsylvania (2003)