Featured Profile

Tara Karamlou, MD

“Congenital heart surgery just seemed to make sense for me personally, but my definitive specialty choice can be distilled down to two aspects: 1) Mentorship; and 2) the unique opportunity to take care of children (our future) in a very tangible and direct way.” (quote continues below)

“I had the good fortune early in my general surgery career to meet several visionaries in the field of congenital cardiac surgery who inspired and challenged me in a very comprehensive, yet intuitive way. I cannot overemphasize the importance of this in directing career trajectories and driving progress – especially for women cardiothoracic surgeons. Regarding the second aspect, the reconstructive aspect (as opposed to extirpative aspect) of congenital surgery appealed to me, but caring for children, I felt, provided a sustainability – a legacy – to what I would do every day that I cherish. I really could not envision another pathway at this point.”

Tara Karamlou, MD, is a congenital cardiac surgeon at the Cleveland Clinic in Cleveland, Ohio. Dr. Karamlou completed her residency in General Surgery at the Oregon Health & Science University, received CT Surgical training at the University of Michigan, and completed her completed her Congenital Cardiac Fellowship at the Seattle Children’s Hospital. She is an outstanding role model for women, congenital surgeons, and our entire specialty.


As highlighted in her nomination from WTS leader and colleague, Dr. Lauren Kane:

“Dr. Tara Karamlou is an incredible congenital heart surgeon, renowned researcher, role model and wonderful human being. She is Associate Professor, Congenital heart surgeon and the Director of Research and Education at the Cleveland Clinic. She is incredibly well published and has contributed to not only the field of congenital heart surgery but as a whole of cardiothoracic surgery. She has been a mentor to more people, students and residents then can be named. She has served on and continues to serve on numerous national and international level taskforce and workforce within our specialty. I have benefited from knowing her as a colleague and friend.”