Cardiac Catheterization and Interventional Laboratories

cardiac imaging

The Emory Heart Center has a long tradition of excellence in diagnostic cardiac catheterization and interventional coronary procedures. Emory Heart Center has continued to be a leader in cutting edge treatments against coronary artery disease, from the pioneering beginnings of angioplasty with Dr. Andreas Gruentzig to our current standing as one of the top ten interventional centers in the country.

Our Interventional and Catheterization 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. Over 8,000 catheterization and interventional coronary procedures are performed annually and collectively between our facilities at Emory University Hospital Midtown, Emory University Hospital and The Emory Clinic. 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.

Emory University Hospital Midtown Catheterization Labs
Henry A. Liberman, MD, Director

Emory University Hospital Catheterization Labs
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

cardiac imagingCatheterization and Interventional Labs at Emory University Hospital

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. Dr. John S. Douglas, the current director of the angioplasty program, also a member of that early pioneering team, 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 Hospital's Catheterization and Interventional laboratories are dedicated to providing their patients with the best and most lasting treatment options.

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. Cardiac catheterization,pre-procedure preparation and post procedure recovery areas are all located within the same suite. We provide a comfortable and relaxing atmosphere for family members to stay with patients before their procedure and during their recovery period.

cardiac imaging
waiting room

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.