Field of View. A lens on alumni professions.

Dr. Evan Zahn ’82 is all heart. As one of the world’s preeminent experts in pediatric cardiology, he brings passion and compassion to the tiniest and most vulnerable patients so that they can, ultimately, grow up to lead full, happy and healthy lives. He’s also an active father and a longtime supporter of all things UAlbany. In fact, it was a generous gift from Dr. Zahn that boosted the University’s This Is Our Time campaign over its $150 million goal.

So, what does it take to be a pioneering doctor, energetic dad, and ultimate Great Dane? Take a look for yourself.

I work in the Guerin Congenital Heart Program at the hospital Cedars Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles. The view from our terrace in the morning provides me with the much needed calm I need to start the day. Hard to believe this is in the heart of the westside of Los Angeles!

Evan holds a coffee cup as he looks out toward the tree covered mountains.

Coffee and contemplation before work.

Even wearing scrubs holds device that will be used in the operation.Close up of device that will be used for the operation held by a gloved hand.

Reviewing the steps before procedure with the team. At right is the patch that we will place in the heart to fix the hole in this little girl’s heart. We started developing the1st iteration of this device in 1996!!!Like everything else we do…it’s come a long way since then!

I first started closing holes in the heart with minimally invasive techniques back in the early 90’s. Back then, with the technology we had at the time, these were time-consuming and often incredibly challenging procedures that only a few children could have. Now in 2021, they are simple, fast, easy to do and almost everyone with this type of hole in the heart can have this done.

Evan washes his hands outside the operating room.

Time to scrub in!

Going over the final plan with the team as we “glove up.”

Doctors wearing masks and gowns talk to hear other in the operating room.

Because it’s a painless procedure we can just use mild sedation instead of general anesthesia.

Two doctors perform operation. Use syringe to inject anesthesia into patient.

Carefully sizing the hole with a soft balloon that can be seen here within the heart on the monitor.

The doctor looks at the computer screen as he performs the operation. Computer shows inside image of patient, ribs and balloon device.

After patching the hole we take a careful final look at everything to make sure it’s perfect before finishing up.

Doctors stand back from operating table and look toward monitors.

Wide awake and relieved a few hours later, our little patient ate lunch, watched TV with her mom and went home the next morning…good as new!

Evan checks the heartbeat of his patient as she lays in her hospital bed.
Both Evan and patient give a thumbs up.

Good as new!

Family and Friends

are where the heart is.

Evan’s family and friends are very near and dear to his heart; they inspire him to help other families to have quality lives together, building memories.

Even and family smile for a photo around the dinner table.

Typical dinner with a small portion of our large modern family.

Even and his family stand at the top of the mountain they just hiked.

Hiking in the Santa Monica Mountains behind our home.

Evan takes a selfie of himself and his friends in a wooded area near a cabin.

Our beloved “Fight Club.”