March 12, 1955


Author Affiliations

Director of Cardiovascular Surgery Marymount Hospital Garfield Heights, Ohio.

JAMA. 1955;157(11):949. doi:10.1001/jama.1955.02950280073030

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To the Editor:—  It is often very helpful to explain to the patient with heart disease the exact nature of his illness. This allays anxiety, facilitates treatment and recovery, and makes for a better relationship between the doctor and the patient. I have found a simple, time-saving way of explaining cardiac lesions to my patients. This method is particularly helpful when surgery is necessary. Two diagrams have been drawn at my request by George Thomas, medical artist, Brooke Army Hospital, Fort Sam Houston, Texas. The first diagram (fig. 1) is a cross section of the heart. Cardiac chambers, valves, main arteries, and veins are easily identified. The diagram is so designed that a ductus arteriosus, coarctation of the aorta, valvular abnormality, septal defect, or a number of other lesions can be easily demonstrated.I begin the explanation by tracing the normal course of the circulation with a red and blue

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