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December 17, 1997

Physiological Origins of Heart Sounds and Murmurs: The Unique Interactive Guide to Cardiac Diagnosis

Author Affiliations

Kaiser Permanente Medical Care Program San Diego, Calif

JAMA. 1997;278(23):2117-2118. doi:10.1001/jama.1997.03550230093051

This article is only available in the PDF format. Download the PDF to view the article, as well as its associated figures and tables.


Diagnostic recognition of heart sounds has always been a difficult skill to acquire because it requires repeated exposure to patients with appropriately illustrative cardiac lesions. Interpretative understanding of heart sounds is a major additional step, which requires coupling that clinical recognition to a comprehension of complex physiologic processes.

The cardiologist and teacher J. Michael Criley has created an effective teaching tool, which will help those wanting to further their diagnostic ability in both recognizing and understanding heart sounds and murmurs. Whereas many medical CD-ROMs seem designed either to market a skimpy book in a novel format or to inexpensively reproduce multiple color photographs, this one meaningfully exploits the new technology of computer graphics to teach in ways not usually possible.

Physiological Origins of Heart Sounds and Murmurs is an ingenious CD-ROM that takes acoustic recordings of 200 normal and abnormal heart sounds and reproduces them with synchronized depictions of the