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June 23, 1993

Cardiology: The Evolution of the Science and the Art

JAMA. 1993;269(24):3160-3161. doi:10.1001/jama.1993.03500240104038

Richard Bing and his friends have written a superb book about the evolution of our knowledge of the heart and circulation. He and his coauthors are highly qualified to do so, because they have either been responsible for, or have been observers of, the evolution.

Bing quotes Emerson: "As I am so I see; use whatever language we will, we can never say anything but what we are." Bing sets his own stage by adding, "Therefore, for a historian, the personality of the artist or scientist must be an essential element of study." He then traces the scientific ideas that make up the core of the evolution of our knowledge in cardiovascular medicine. Along the way he makes the story interesting by displaying the personality of those who made it happen.

The 306-page text deals with the pioneers who were responsible for, or deeply interested in, cardiac catheterization, echocardiography, cardiopulmonary