Author + information
- David J. Moliterno, MD, Editor-in-Chief, JACC: Cardiovascular Interventions∗ ()
- ↵∗Address for correspondence:
Dr. David J. Moliterno, Department of Internal Medicine, University of Kentucky, 900 S. Limestone Avenue, 329 Wethington Building, Lexington, Kentucky 40536-0200.
As the calendar year closes, we can look back on 2017 remembering it as the year of important anniversaries for interventional cardiology. By some reports, the concept of special anniversaries and anniversary themes or gifting began in Central Europe during the Roman Empire when a husband of means would provide his wife with a head wreath of silver to celebrate their 25th wedding anniversary (and one of gold for those who made it to the 50th). During the Victorian era (1800s) in the United Kingdom, more special anniversaries (and corresponding special gifts) were added for the 1st, 5th, 10th, 15th, and 20th anniversaries. And not surprisingly, the American National Retail Jeweler Association in the 1930s happily offered to fill the in-between years, so that all anniversaries could be associated with buying unique gifts, from paper to diamond.
Traditionally the 10th-anniversary theme or gifting is to be tin. JACC: Cardiovascular Interventions celebrated its 10th anniversary this year. The journal launched in 2007 with Dr. Spencer King III at the helm as Editor-in-Chief, and volume 1, issue 1 was printed in February 2008. The appointment as editor for the journal is a 5-year term, and Dr. King was resoundingly endorsed for the 2-term maximum. During his 10 years of marriage to the journal, Dr. King did a terrific job putting and keeping the journal on an upward trajectory. Also during his tenure, he celebrated his 50th wedding anniversary (2013) with his lovely bride, Gail (I cannot confirm a head wreath of gold, though she undoubtedly deserves one). Dr. King merits more than a tin crown and will always be honored as the Emeritus Editor-in-Chief of JACC: Cardiovascular Interventions and recognized as such in the journal’s masthead.
The gift for the 15th anniversary is crystal, and this is most fitting for the anniversary of the first transcatheter aortic valve replacement by Dr. Alain Cribier and colleagues in 2002. Indeed, perhaps the biggest advancement in structural heart disease over the past many decades is the development of transcatheter heart valves. Where once there was a malady of cardiac-output strangulation, now there is a reasonably safe and durable, turn-back-the-clock-of-time procedure to promptly increase the effective orifice area of the aortic valve. It is very impressive that the first generation of transcatheter aortic valve replacement devices, as studied in the PARTNER B (Placement of Aortic Transcatheter Valves) trial, provided an absolute reduction in 1-year mortality by 20% (vs. routine therapy) (1). Newer generation valves and evolutions in technique are providing parity in outcome with surgically placed valves and at a lower cost. I am excited to see what the next special anniversary will bring!
The well-known 25th-anniversary gift seems appropriate, and yet not, for radial artery access for coronary angiography and interventions. Most in the field know the birthing of coronary angiography was via the brachial artery using the so-called Sones technique beginning nearly 60 years ago. But it was Ferdinand Kiemeneij who performed the first coronary angioplasty via the radial approach in 1992 (2). The reason the anniversary seems less festive is that despite extensive evidence supporting the preferred use of radial artery access (vs. femoral), transradial programs remain in their infancy in many centers, particularly in the United States. Hopefully, the momentum of increased radial usage in recent years will continue.
Among the lesser known celebratory gifts is ruby for the 40th anniversary. Any perception of a lesser importance for the 40th anniversary or for the ruby being a conciliatory gift should change with the iconic events of the past 4 decades in interventional cardiology. I very much like Dr. King’s simile in an editor’s page near the 30th anniversary of the first coronary angioplasty: “’Like a pebble in a pond’—the analogy fits Andreas Grüntzig’s audacious act of commitment and conviction in inflating a balloon in the coronary artery of a brave 38-year-old, Dolf Bachmann. The ‘ripples’ from this event have spread throughout medicine in ever-expanding ways to influence our lives now and well into an unknown future” (3). Yes, it was and remains an unknown future, yet the path of progress over the last 10 years has been even more asymptotic upward and some ripples have become waves. When I thought of that page recently, I imagined the “pebble” in the pond being a ruby—certainly a gemstone. Many ripples have occurred and many luminaries have guided us through these years. Some were recognized in various celebratory events at cardiac society meetings this year. I am pleased to have received notes from several of the interventional cardiology pioneers, 2 of whom have correspondence in this issue of JACC: Cardiovascular Interventions (4,5). Young interventionalists may not realize that the earliest balloon angioplasty catheters had a very short wire fixed to the end of the balloon catheter. It was Dr. Martin Kaltenbach who had the vision to fully separate the wire from the balloon catheter, thereby having a bare wire to use interchangeably with different balloons. John Simpson and others pioneered over-the-wire device technology, and Tassilo Bonzel envisioned the sliding-rail system or monorail as it was later called.
Anniversaries are special. They are meant to honor events of time and the individuals linked by special bonds. 2017 has had many tumultuous events, but as this year closes, I am fondly remembering all the interventional cardiology hallmarks—celebrated with tin, crystal, silver, and ruby.
- 2017 American College of Cardiology Foundation
- Rao S.V.,
- Dharma S.
- King S.B. III.
- Kaltenbach M.
- Bonzel T.