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Dr. Khwaja is the Director of Cardiac Surgery at the Fresno Heart and Surgical Hospital:

Dr. Khwaja recognized as a leader in cardiac surgery, he was named  the Director of Cardiac Surgery at the Fresno Heart and Surgical Hospital. He is involved in monitoring quality and patient safety issues, and instituting quality measures and programs to bring advanced cardiac surgery care to the Valley.

Dr. Khwaja honored as "Saint Agnes Champion in Care Physician Award":

Dr. Khwaja exemplifies a champion in care because he is respectful of nursing and the job the RN does. He works collaboratively , always checking with nurses/staff, not just writing orders without feedback from the nurses. His hands-on approach inspires confidence in nurses and patients alike. He respects and values nurses opinions without ever compromising excellent care. He is the best example of what a champion in care should be - kind, respectful, and good at what he does.

Dr. Khwaja recognized as Chairman of the Cardiac Surgery Division at St. Agnes Hospital:

"I would like to extend my personal thanks to you for serving as Chair of the Cardiac Surgery Division for the past year.

We appreciate your endeavors and dedication in this important function of the Department of Surgery.

Best wishes for a happy and successful New Year.


Richard Winters, M.D.

President of the Medical Staff"

Service & Support to the community:

Central California Heart & Lung Surgery and Dr. Khwaja have a tradition of supporting our community with time and charitable donations. We are proud to have supported the following organizations and encourage you to learn about them by clicking on the link:

St. Anthony of Padua Catholic Church of Reedley

Valley Crescent School

Islamic Cultural Center of Fresno

Hinds Hospice

Mended Hearts

Sikh Association of Fresno

Children's Hospital Central California

St. Agnes Hospital Foundation

American Heart Association

Christ Church Oakhurst

Community Food Bank

Beverley Hospital Foundation

Barlow Respiratory Hospital Foundation


Dr. Khwaja bringing Robotic Surgery to the Central Valley

Dr. Khwaja was recognized as a Key Opinion Leader in Cardiothoracic Surgery and was awarded a Robotic Thoracic Fellowship with Intuitive Surgical.  He is one of 8 surgeons nationwide awarded this fellowship. Dr. Khwaja is first surgeon in the Valley to perform lung lobectomy surgery with the da Vinci Si Robot. He is one of the busiest thoracic surgeon in California and is featured on the da Vinci robot surgeon locator  (see his profile).



Dr. Khwaja is a HealthGrades Recognized Doctor

According to Healthgrades survey, 100% patients would recommend Dr. Khwaja to friends and family. He is ranked as excellent in all patient survey questions and above national average (see his profile).


Congratulations to Niomi on the birth of her daughter

Niomi gave birth to a  beautiful girl, Leilani, on August 3rd.  Niomi is on maternity leave.  


Back to back to back honors as one of the Central Valley's Best Doctors

Dr. Shamsuddin Khwaja was once again selected by the Fresno Magazine as one of the Best Doctors in the Central Valley!  To get more information on Dr. Khwaja's most recent honor, see the October 2011 issue of the Fresno Magazine.

Dr. Khwaja is the only heart surgeon on the list  to be selected by his peers as the best heart surgeon three consecutive times.


Dr. Khwaja Serves The Veterans at the VA Hospital


Dr. Shamsuddin Khwaja is proud to be serving the veterans at the VA Hospital. He is a board certified Thoracic Surgeon who provides specialty care in the field of lung surgery at the VA Hospital of Central California. He also helps to train future surgeons at the VA Hospital. Dr. Khwaja has been a staff member at the VA Hospital of Central California since 2008. He is also proud of the tradition of service to our veterans at Boston, Houston, and Dallas VA Hospitals.


United States Department of Veterans Affairs




Bloodless Surgery


Dr. Shamsuddin Khwaja is privileged to provide surgical care for Jehovah Witness patients. This year Dr. Khwaja has performed “bloodless surgery”, surgery that does not require transfusion, on patients requiring heart and lung surgery. From Jan 2011 to Mar 2011, he has performed the following surgery on Jehovah Witness patients:

1. Double valve replacement (aortic/mitral) and double coronary bypass surgery
2. Coronary artery bypass surgery
3. Aortic valve replacement with coronary bypass surgery
4. Lung surgery, lobectomy, for lung cancer
5. Removal of mediastinal tumor with thymectomy and lung

Dr. Shams Khwaja is pleased and privileged to provide surgery for Jehovah Witness patients.


Dr. Khwaja recognized by the University of California, Davis Department of Family and Community Medicine


The University of California, Davis Department of Family and Community Medicine hereby recognizes Shamsuddin Khwaja, MD for participation as an Active Preceptor in Family Medicine. Dr. Shams Khwaja serves a vital role in the training of future health care professionals. 




This hospital food often gets recipe requests


Hospital food is often the target of jokes and for good reason.  Most patients are on diets that limit fat, sugar and salt – limiting its flavor.  Open heart patient Vernious Staton was expecting nothing more than the typical bland hospital fare when she was first admitted to Fresno Heart & Surgical Hospital for open heart surgery in 2004. Instead, she was amazed with the quality and tastiness.

“Compared to other hospitals, it was a mile apart” said 71-year-old Staton, who insisted on returning to Fresno Heart & Surgical when she found out she’d need a second open heart surgery this past year. “That place is wonderful.” she explained.

Fresno Heart & Surgical Hospital prides itself on treating patients to a luxury hotel experience in a hospital setting. Its rooms feature carpeting, drapes and decorative lamps. Tropical plants and small trees decorate hallways. And the staff focus is on service and courtesy. For the past three years, the hospital has been named among the nation’s top 5% in patient experience by HealthGrades. Only two other hospitals in California have achieved a similar distinction.

Although patient surveys used to make those ratings don’t ask about food, the hospital cafe draws a steady crowd of neighboring business people for lunch.  And Staton was so excited about the food that arrived on her hospital tray, that she asked her cardiac surgeon, Shamsuddin Khwaja, M.D. if she could get some recipes from the hospital’s chef.  “Dr. Khwaja is one of the best and he took lots of time and care with me,” she said. Fresno Heart & Surgical’s Café manger Susan Sample was pleased to share her recipes and very impressed that Dr. Shams Khwaja himself had called her to request the heart healthy recipes for his patient.  The request prompted the hospital and Sample to share special recipes with a wider audience here on the hospital’s web site.

Sample says her philosophy on food is that it should taste good, be nutritionally balanced and as fresh as possible.  She likes to get her ingredients from local growers and designs recipes around what’s in season.  Another ingredient is a dedicated kitchen staff.  “My staff works very hard, yet I tell them to find joy in what they are doing”, said Susan Sample, “This is how we provide quality, healthy food that tastes great.”

Staton grew up in the south and learned to cook with lots of flavorful fat.  Being placed on a no fat, no sugar, no salt diet has been a real challenge, she said.  But she said she’s ready to try Sample’s approach and is especially excited to be able to find those heart-healthy, flavorful recipes on the internet now.



Back to back honors as one of the Central Valley's Best Doctors

Dr. Shamsuddin Khwaja was once again selected by the Fresno Magazine as one of the Best Doctors in the Central Valley!  To get more information on Dr. Khwaja's most recent honor, see the October 2010 issue of the Fresno Magazine. This honor is bestowed every two years.


Dr. Shams Khwaja gives a young Pakistani boy a second chance at life

Dr. Shamsuddin Khwaja performed a pulmonary valve replacement on a young man from Pakistan.  The young man was born with a congenital heart defect.  He required a redo heart surgery which could not be performed in Pakistan.  Dr. Khwaja was contacted and with the help of Saint Agnes Medical Center and the Saint Agnes Medical Center foundation, the young man was brought to Fresno, California for surgery.  He is now back in Pakistan enjoying his new life.  Dr. Khwaja is grateful to the partners involved in giving this boy a second chance at life.  Special thanks to Saint Agnes Medical Center, Dr. Sukjahit Chahal, Cryolife Company, and the staff at Saint Agnes Medical Center for their time and donated services.