GMC: 3187243


Special Interests: Adult Cardiac Surgery, Thoracic Surgery

I am a Consultant Cardiothoracic Surgeon in the Golden Jubilee National Hospital in Glasgow. I practice in both cardiac and thoracic surgery in adults.

I graduated from University College Cork in Ireland and gained my first exposure to Cardiothoracic Surgery there. I then moved to Oxford, following which I spent a short period in Liverpool. My next move was to Glasgow where I did the bulk of my training, with a year toward the end of the programme spent on a fellowship in St Vincent’s Hospital, Sydney.

I have a PGCert in Medical Education.  I have been on the Scottish Training Committee for a number of years and am currently Training Programme Director for Cardiothoracic Surgery in Scotland.


Major open heart surgery is carried out by a team which includes surgeons, anaesthetists, intensive care physicians, nursing staff and other supporting professionals. At the Golden Jubilee National Hospital the cardiac surgery service is continually monitored and supported by a robust clinical governance structure which encompasses the whole team.

Training Attended
Undergraduate - University College Cork 1977-1983   Postgraduate - West of Scotland Cardiac Surgical Training Programme 1992-1998   Cardiac Transplant Fellow St Vincent's Hospital, Sydney, Australia 1997   Postgraduate Certificate in Medical Education, University of Glasgow 2014
Qualifications & Accreditations
MB,BCh,BAO FRCSI(CTh) PGcert Health Prof Ed
Additional Information

Number of lung cancer operations performed in 2017: 

John Butler works as part of a team of thoracic surgeons at
Click here to see data on how this team performed in 2017, including;

  • the number of operations to remove lung cancer performed by each surgeon in the team
  • the adjusted survival rates 30, 90 and 365 days after surgery to remove lung cancer
  • the length of time (defined as median days) patients having cancer surgery at this Trust spend in hospital.
  • the percentage of patients readmitted to hospital within 90 days of surgery
  • the pooled resection rate of Trusts served by this surgical unit

This data comes from the Lung Cancer Clinical Outcomes Publication.  This project makes the results achieved by surgical teams treating lung cancer within NHS England available to the public.

The latest report covers operations performed in 2017.  More information about this project is available here.

Risk-adjusted in-hospital survival rate

This graph shows the “in hospital” survival rate of patients who are operated on by the individual surgeon/unit you have selected. “In hospital” means time the patient is in the hospital where they have had their operation. It does not include any time that patients may have spent in other hospitals, either before or after their heart operation.

The data has been through a complex methodology, including the variations in patient risk factors in order to give you a comparative base from which to work from. This means that the survival rates take into account the type and risk of patients being operated on for each surgeon/unit. This is known as risk adjusted survival.

The vertical axis shows the GMC number of the surgeon or the Hospital identifier. In brackets is the total number of patients operated on by the surgeon/unit and the percentage of patients for whom the survival is known. The horizontal axis is the percentage survival. The dashed vertical line shows the risk adjusted survival rate for the UK as a whole. The solid black horizontal line represents the surgeon/unit. What is important here is that the horizontal line crosses the vertical dashed line. If this occurs, it means that the surgeon/unit are within the expected outcomes given the case-mix and risk factors of the patients they operate on.

The icons that sit on the horizontal line should give you more information about your surgeon/team.

For example

The open square is the survival rate with no risk adjustments:
The X is the predicted survival with adjustments
The solid dot is the survival probability after the methodology has been applied.

  • If the solid dot is red it means survival is worse than expected
  • If the solid dot is black it means that it is within limits
  • If the solid dot is green it means that there is significantly higher survival than expected

There is a lot of information on these plots, but the takeaway message is that if the solid black line crosses the dashed vertical line then the survival rate for the surgeon/unit is within expectations and that there is no reason for any concern.

A more detailed explanation about these graphs and methodology can be found here: Graph Explanations