Cardiac Catheterization

A 25-year-old surgical student, Werner Forssmann, is credited as being the first person to pass a catheter into a human heart in 1929. He performed the procedure on his own heart! Andre Cournand, an early contributor to the procedure, referred to cardiac catheterization in his 1956 Nobel Lecture as "...the key in the lock." Many greats in medicine have contributed to the techniques and procedures practiced today.

A cardiac catheterization is a common, nonsurgical procedure that allows physicians to determine if there are any narrowings in the arteries leading to the heart. It also shows the physician the outside heart size and pumping ability, the inside chamber size, and how well the valves open and close. The procedure is done by inserting a small flexible tube (catheter) into a blood vessel and gently advancing it to the heart. Blood pressure measurements are taken and moving X-ray pictures (angiograms) are recorded using digital imaging and/or 35mm film.

Our Catheterization and Interventional labs are staffed by specially trained physicians, nurses and technologists to provide high quality care and effective treatment for patients with heart and vascular diseases. The heart teams at Emory University Hospital, Emory University Hospital Midtown, and The Emory Clinic collectively perform approximately 8,000 procedures annually. As a primary investigational site for new treatment modalities, we continue to make great strides in improving long term benefits while providing the best possible care for our patients.

Cardiac Catheterization Lab at Emory University Hospital Midtown

Henry A. Liberman, MD, Director

Map to Emory University Hospital Midtown

cath lab

Catheterization and Interventional Labs at Emory University Hospital

John S. Douglas, Jr., MD - Director, The Emory Clinic Outpatient Cardiac Cath Lab
Stephen D. Clements, MD - Director, Interventional Cardiology Research at the Carlyle Fraser Heart Center

The late Dr. Andreas Gruentzig, renowned for pioneering angioplasty in 1977, directed the angioplasty program at the Emory University School of Medicine from 1981 until his death in 1985. Also a member of that early pioneering team, Dr. John S. Douglas, the director of the angioplasty program, has continued to be a world leader in the progression of interventional cardiology. The nation's first coronary stent procedure was performed by Dr. Douglas in 1987.

The staff and physicians at Emory University Hospital's Catheterization and Interventional laboratories are dedicated to providing their patients with the best and most lasting treatment options. Map to Emory University Hospital

cath lab

The Emory Clinic Outpatient Cardiac Catheterization Lab

The Emory Clinic Cardiac Catheterization lab offers patients a private office setting with access to hospital facilities.

The Outpatient lab performs approximately 1200 catheterizations annually. It is located directly across the street from Emory Hospital. The lab specializes in providing diagnostic services for ambulatory patients in a relaxed, private office setting. Pre-procedure preparation, cardiac catheterization, and post procedure recovery areas are all located within the same suite. Family members can stay comfortably with patients before their procedure and during their recovery period. Map to Emory Clinic