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Angioplasty.Org's 30 Years of Documenting Stents and Balloons On View at TCT
10,000 cardiologists in DC can see award-winning filmmaker Burt Cohen's history of
" the procedure that changed the face of medicine"

See the story of the very first coronary angioplasty ever done on September 16, 1977, as told by the patient himself, Mr. Adolph Bachmann, now 68 years old, and his physician, Dr. Bernhard Meier. Dr. Andreas Gruentzig not only invented angioplasty, but an entirely new branch of medicine that made possible treatment for a variety of diseases without the need for surgery. (2:33)

October 22, 2007, Washington DC -- After a year of much controversy about drug-eluting stents, attendees at the largest gathering of interventional cardiologists in the world in Washington DC this week are lauding the 30th Anniversary of Coronary Angioplasty, a celebration that began last month in Zurich, Switzerland, the birthplace of the procedure.

Many celebrants at the TCT (Transcatheter Cardiovascular Therapeutics) meeting, including Boston Scientific and Abbott Vascular, are turning to the Angioplasty.Org History Center. Established in 1997, this one-of-kind archive of footage, photos and documentary films records the unique history of device-driven interventional treatment of heart and vascular disease, the fastest-growing field of medicine in history

Angioplasty.Org's videos, from home movies of Andreas Gruentzig, the inventor of coronary angioplasty, to scores of interviews with leading researchers, are being utilized in multiple 30th Anniversary presentations, and installed in a permanent history exhibit at the ACC/SCAI headquarters at Heart House in Washington. Producer Burt Cohen's award-winning documentary "PTCA: A History" is on view continuously during the TCT at Boston Scientific's exhibition booth.

"It's critical for the profession to maintain historical perspective," says Cohen, founder of Angioplasty.Org. "Gruentzig launched interventional cardiology with unprecedented scientific rigor and a commitment to 'treat the patient, not the lesion'."

"Burt Cohen has been documentarian of this field of medicine for 30 years," Dr. Steve Oesterle, Medical Director of Medtronic, told the audience at the recent NY-ACE meeting, organized by Lenox Hill Heart and Vascular Institute of New York, where Cohen's new film about the Andreas Gruentzig Society's 30th Anniversary Meeting was screened.

At the Mellon Auditorium in Washington on October 21st, Abbott Vascular featured historical material from Angioplasty.Org at its "Celebration of 30 Years of Angioplasty: A Special Physician Event." Some 700 cardiologists and a panel of pioneering physicians attended the meeting, moderated by Barbara Walters.

Cohen says, "In 1979, when I produced the first film on angioplasty, putting a balloon in a person's heart was viewed as a heretical idea. We developed the live course in the early 80's to disseminate the concept and technique, never imagining that it would turn into a multi-million dollar event like the TCT. Advances in cardiology are moving rapidly, from percutaneous valve replacement to gene therapy -- the key is to pursue innovation while never losing sight of the individual patient, and to press on with scientific validation openly and unflinchingly -- that was Gruentzig's message."

Highlights from 14 hours of interviews with cardiology pioneers at the International Andreas Gruentzig Society's 30th Anniversary meeting in Zurich will be on view at .

Angioplasty.Org, founded in 1997, is an award-winning, highly regarded independent health website used by both health care professionals and patients. The site has been recommended by the Department of Health and Human Services and over 800 other referrers, receives 100,000 monthly visits and has reached 5 million people.

Source: Angioplasty.Org