Mr Clifford W Barlow

Qualifications

MBBCh (Witwatersrand)

FRCS (Cardiothoracic)

DPhil (Oxon)

Surgical experience and interests

Mr Barlow has performed over 5000 Cardiac Operations in Southampton as primary surgeon since his appointment as Consultant Cardiac Surgeon in 2000. He performs all aspects of adult Cardiac Surgery, with the exception of transplantation, as there is no regional transplant unit here. The majority of procedures involve coronary bypass grafting but he also performs aortic and mitral valve replacements, mitral valve repairs and major thoracic aortic surgery. He has a particular interest in redo-procedures.

Mr Barlow’s personal operative results, and those of the Cardiac Unit at UHS, are available for public scrutiny on the website of the Society for Cardiothoracic Surgery in Great Britain and Ireland (www.scts.org). His personal operative outcomes, and those of the cardiac unit at UHS, have consistently been significantly better than expected when adjusted for surgical and operative risk. They compare very favourably with other Cardiac Units in the United Kingdom.

Mr Barlow’s experience and results at Spire Southampton Hospital are also available for scrutiny on www.scts.org. He has performed over 1000 cardiac procedures at this hospital with a mortality rate less than 0.25% for all cases - despite a varied case mix. The outcomes for the Cardiac Surgical Group at Spire Southampton are especially outstanding considering the surgical and operative risk profiles of patients are equivalent to many much larger Cardiac Units in the United Kingdom. The risk adjusted surgical outcome data for Mr Barlow and the Cardiac Surgical group are consistently updated on the Spire Southampton website.

Professional and research interests

Mr Barlow is a lead Examiner for the final FRCS (Cardiothoracic) Intercollegiate examination. In addition he is on both the Standard setting and Question Writing Groups for this examination. He is the Unit representative for UHS at the Society for Cardiothoracic Surgery of the United Kingdom and Ireland. He is Regional Representative for South Central England for Cardiothoracic Surgery at the Royal College of Surgeons. He is also Cardiothoracic Representative on the local Professional Affairs Board.

Mr Barlow has a longstanding dedication to teaching and training junior surgeons in Cardiothoracic Surgery. He established a permanent training laboratory at UHS and has run several wet-lab sessions.

Mr Barlow has run the clinical outcome audit database at UHS for the last 12 years. He is currently also responsible for Cardiothoracic Outcome data at Spire Southampton Hospital. He is Consultant Cardiothoracic Surgical liaison with the UHS Clinical Governance committee and is on the Medical Advisory Committee of Spire Hospital Southampton.

Mr Barlow has a longstanding involvement in clinical research in many aspects of Cardiac Surgery and Physiology. This has continued since he completed his Doctoral thesis (DPhil) at the University of Oxford in 1994. He currently has over 50 publications in peer reviewed journals. (www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed)

Current NHS and/or university posts

Consultant Cardiac Surgeon, University Hospital Southampton Foundation Trust (UHS)

Year of first medical qualification

1985

Current membership(s) of professional, national, InTERNATIONAL  and regional bodies

Society for Cardiothoracic Surgery in Great Britain and Ireland

Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Glasgow

American Association for Thoracic Surgery

South Central Professional Affairs Board

Background Information

Mr Barlow received his MBBCh at the Medical School of the University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg in 1985. Following initial training in General Surgery there and at Baragwanath Hospital in Soweto he came to the United Kingdom in 1991. In 1994 he completed his Doctoral research thesis on aspects of exercise in Heart Failure at the University of Oxford (DPhil). He trained in Cardiothoracic Surgery at the John Radcliffe Hospital, Oxford and Papworth Hospital, Cambridge between 1994 and 1999. Mr Barlow spent 18 months as Cardiothoracic Transplant Fellow at Stanford University, California before being appointed as a Consultant Cardiothoracic Surgeon at the University Hospital Southampton Foundation Trust (UHS) in 2000. In 2007 he discontinued his Thoracic Surgical Practice to focus on Adult Cardiac Surgery.


Surgical Outcomes Data

Number and type of operations performed

This graph shows the number and percentage of each type of heart surgery done by this consultant surgeon. The number of operations is shown in the line going up the left hand side. The percentage (%) underneath each coloured bar shows how much of this consultant's heart surgery is made up each procedure type.

The 'key' underneath the graph shows what procedure(s) each coloured bar shows. The abbreviations used are explained below:

  • Isolated: This procedure has been carried out on its own. No other procedures were done during the same operation.
  • CABG: Coronary artery bypass grafting
  • AVR: Aortic valve replacement
  • MV: Mitral valve procedure

You can find out more about these procedures in the 'About cardiothoracic surgery' section. If you or someone you know if having heart surgery, it may be helpful to know whether the consultant does lots of that procedure. If you have questions or concerns about the number of procedures being done at your hospital, you should speak to your heart surgeon.

Click here for help understanding this graph

In-hospital survival rate (risk adjusted)

This graph shows the percentage of patients who survived their operation and left hospital alive. This is the 'In-hospital survival rate'. Some patients are more unwell than others and some need more complex operations. Hence, hospitals and consultants perform a range of cardiac operations and the type of patients they operate on can differ. So that we can make fair comparisons between them, the survival rates have been 'risk adjusted' to take into account the illness of the patient and the complexity of the operation. The dot on the graph shows the risk-adjusted survival for the unit/surgeon you have selected and the number of operations performed over the last 3 year period. The blue line indicates the predicted survival and the red dotted lines the range of results expected, worked out by complex statistics.

For more information on understanding mortality rates, look at the Understanding the graphs page

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Average patient risk profile

Some risk factors like age, gender, and other medical problems can affect the outcome of heart surgery.

Each of the graphs below shows what percentage of this consultant's patients have each risk factor (light blue bar on the left) next to the average for the whole of the UK (dark blue bar on the right). This can tell you whether the consultant operates on high risk patients in general, and whether they specialise in doing particular types of complicated surgery, like operations on the thoracic aorta.

You can find out more about the risk factors in the 'About cardiothoracic surgery' section.

Click here for help understanding this graph

Risk adjusted in-hospital survival for all surgeons

This graph shows the percentage of patients who survived their operation and left hospital alive. This is the 'In-hospital survival rate'. Some patients are more unwell than others and some need more complex operations. Hence, hospitals and consultants perform a range of cardiac operations and the type of patients they operate on can differ. So that we can make fair comparisons between them, the survival rates have been 'risk adjusted' to take into account the illness of the patient and the complexity of the operation. The dot on the graph shows the risk-adjusted survival for the unit/surgeon you have selected in comparison with the other units and surgeons in GB&I.