Skip to Main Content


In 1929 Werner Forssman, a resident surgeon at Eberswalde in Germany, inserted a urologic catheter into his right atrium from a left antecubital vein cutdown he had performed on himself using a mirror. After walking downstairs to the radiology suite, the position of the catheter tip was verified by a roentgenogram. This was the beginning of cardiac catheterization: the insertion and passage of small plastic catheters into arteries, veins, the heart, and other vascular structures. Because there have been dramatic and innovative advances in both methods and materials, catheterization has become a standard medical procedure, allowing the clinician to use physiologic data to guide treatment; measure cardiovascular hemodynamics such as pressures, cardiac output, and oximetry data; acquire radiographic images of coronary arteries and cardiac chambers; and examine the aorta (Ao), pulmonary veins, and peripheral vessels for diseases, anomalies, or obstructions. In the last 3 decades, cardiac catheterization has evolved further, from a diagnostic modality to one of a treatment through numerous catheter-based interventions (eg, angioplasty, stenting, closure of atrial septal defects) (Table 19–1).

Table Graphic Jump Location
TABLE 19–1. Diagnostic and Therapeutic Interventional Procedures That May Accompany Coronary Angiography

Indications and Contraindications


Cardiac catheterization is used to diagnose atherosclerotic artery disease, cardiomyopathy, myocardial infarction, and valvular or congenital heart abnormalities. The principal indications for cardiac catheterization are summarized in Table 19–2. In general, cardiac catheterization is an elective diagnostic procedure ...

Want remote access to your institution's subscription?

Sign in to your MyAccess profile while you are actively authenticated on this site via your institution (you will be able to verify this by looking at the top right corner of the screen - if you see your institution's name, you are authenticated). Once logged in to your MyAccess profile, you will be able to access your institution's subscription for 90 days from any location. You must be logged in while authenticated at least once every 90 days to maintain this remote access.


About MyAccess

If your institution subscribes to this resource, and you don't have a MyAccess profile, please contact your library's reference desk for information on how to gain access to this resource from off-campus.

Subscription Options

AccessCardiology Full Site: One-Year Subscription

Connect to the full suite of AccessCardiology content and resources including textbooks such as Hurst's the Heart and Cardiology Clinical Questions, a unique library of multimedia, including heart imaging, an integrated drug database, and more.

$595 USD
Buy Now

Pay Per View: Timed Access to all of AccessCardiology

24 Hour Subscription $34.95

Buy Now

48 Hour Subscription $54.95

Buy Now

Pop-up div Successfully Displayed

This div only appears when the trigger link is hovered over. Otherwise it is hidden from view.