Brian Lima, MD

Associate Professor of Surgery
Department of Cardiac Surgery

Dr. Lima joined our surgical faculty in the Department of Cardiac Surgery from Dallas, Texas, where he was the Surgical Director of Heart Transplantation and Mechanical Circulatory Support for Medical City Healthcare and one of the National Physician Directors for Cardiothoracic Surgery with HCA Healthcare. His efforts led to the development of early identification tools for patients with cardiogenic shock across HCA Healthcare, as well as the first successful DCD (donation after circulatory death) heart transplant program in the state of Texas. Dr. Lima was previously at Northwell Health in New York as the inaugural Surgical Director for the first and only heart transplant program on Long Island.

With nearly 100 publications in peer-reviewed journals, Dr. Lima has extensively investigated clinical outcomes related to heart transplant and mechanical circulatory support, including left ventricular assist devices (LVAD) and extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECM). Beyond research, Dr. Lima is most passionate about clinical care and treats patients with heart failure, cardiac valve and coronary heart disease.


  • M.D., Duke University School of Medicine, Durham, NC 2002
  • B.A., Chemistry, Cornell University, Ithaca, NY 1998

Post Graduate Training:

  • Cardiothoracic Surgery Fellowship, Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, OH 2009-20012
  • General Surgery Residency, Duke University Medical Center, Durham, NC 2002-2009

Clinical Interests:

  • Heart Transplant
  • Mechanical Circulatory Support
  • Coronary Heart Disease
  • Cardiac Valve Disease
  • Transcatheter Aortic Valve Replacement/TAVR
  • Aortic Aneurysms


Department of Cardiac Surgery
Vanderbilt University Medical Center
Vanderbilt Medical Center East
1215 21st Ave, South, Suite 5025
Nashville TN 37232

Phone (615) 343-9195