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Advancing and Translating Knowledge in Vascular Medicine

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Advancing and Translating Knowledge in Vascular Medicine

Marc Husmann et al. Front Cardiovasc Med.

Abstract

For centuries, physicians have depended on the use of written information to gain knowledge. Book printing and binding introduced by Gutenberg in the fifteenth century revolutionized and accelerated the distribution of information. Advancing medical knowledge and progress is not only linked to the scientific quality of a discovery determining it will be accepted by the peers but also by its communication and sharing of new findings with the medical community. All these factors determine whether new knowledge will advance and improve clinical practice, medical education, and ultimately, patient care, and human health. In the past decade medical publishing has witnessed a revolution with regard to the instant, online availability of published "open access" information, which can be accessed and printed from any computer connected to the internet. As an example, how language and availability of printed information may affect distribution of knowledge, we discuss the publication of the first results of balloon angioplasty in patients with peripheral vascular disease 40 years ago by Andreas Grüntzig, M.D. at the University of Zürich. Vascular Medicine, as part of Frontiers in Cardiovascular Medicine, will provide open access provided to all published content for sharing and distributing new and most up-to-date information on clinical practice and medical knowledge in vascular medicine. We anticipate that the ongoing transformation of scientific publishing through open access will further accelerate this process and make new knowledge available even faster. Immediate, unrestricted, and rapid access to the most current knowledge published will play a role in maintaining and advancing human vascular health across the globe.

Keywords: Andreas Grüntzig; angiology; atherosclerosis; coronary artery disease; endovascular therapy; intraluminal therapy; translational medicine; vascular medicine.

Figures

Figure 1
Figure 1
Andreas Grüntzig, M.D. (1939–1985), photograph taken 1982 in Nürnberg, Germany. Photograph courtesy of Felix Mahler, M.D., and used with his permission.
Figure 2
Figure 2
First page of the original article published in 1974 in German by Andreas Grüntzig, M.D. and Heinrich Hopff, Ph.D., reporting Grüntzig’s the new method of balloon angioplasty and results of the first 15 patients with peripheral artery disease successfully treated with this new therapy. Note the insert of an English abstract on the right of the page. Reproduced from Grüntzig and Hopff (10), with permission of the publisher.
Figure 3
Figure 3
Supplemental information (“Zur Arbeit Grüntzig, Hopff”) to the article depicted in Figure 2, showing arterial angiograms of two patients with peripheral artery disease before (left), during (middle), and after (right) percutaneous balloon angioplasty performed by Andreas Grüntzig, M.D. The first angiogram in panel 1 (Abb. 1) indicates left superficial femoral artery stenosis in a 71-year-old man, the procedure was performed on April 9, 1974. The left angiogram panel 2 (Abb. 2) indicates a high-grade stenosis of the left common iliac artery in a 73-year-old male patient, the procedure was performed on March 6, 1974. Note the differently sized angioplasty balloons, both in diameter and length. The German figure legend indicates that both patients were free of symptoms on follow-up 3 months after the procedure. Reproduced from Grüntzig and Hopff (10), with permission of the publisher.

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