André Cournand


André Frédéric Cournand (1895-1988) was a French physician and physiologist.

Awarded the 1956 Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine along with Werner Forssmann and Dickinson W. Richards for their “discoveries concerning heart catheterization and pathological changes in the circulatory system.”

Dr. Forßmann’s successful self catheterisation of the heart in 1928 lead to a peaking interest in the medical community. In 1931 Cournand began to collaborate with Dr. Dickinson W. Richards on refinement of Dr. Forßmann’s infamous cardiac catheterisation, and published a paper “Catherisation of the right auricle man,” detailing the technique for safe catherisation of the heart and enabling first significant measurements of cardiopulmonary function by direct Fick’s method. Cournand and Richards published a series of studies that established use of cardiac catheterisation.

  • Born on September 24, 1895 in Paris, France
  • 1913 – Bachelor’s degree, Faculté des Lettres of the Sorbonne
  • 1914 – Diploma Physics, Chemistry, Biology, Faculté des Sciences
  • 1915-1918 Interrupted studies to enter French army as a Private and ultimately a battalion surgeon. Awarded Croix de Guerre with three bronze stars
  • 1925 – Interne des Hôpitaux de Paris
  • 1930 – MD Faculté de Médecine de Paris. Thesis ‘Acute Disseminated Sclerosis’ under Prof Guillain.
  • 1930 – Emigrated to the USA, American citizen (1941)
  • 1931 – Research on the physiology and physiopathology of respiration – Chest Service of Bellevue Hospital
  • 1951 – Professor at the Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons
  • 1956 – Nobel Prize in Physiology or Medicine
  • Editorial Boards of many medical and physiological publications: Circulation, Physiological Reviews, The American Journal of Physiology, and also Journal de Physiologie and Revue Française d’Etúdes Cliniques et Biologiques.
  • 1981 – Founding member of the World Cultural Council (Council to promote cultural values, goodwill and philanthropy among individuals)
  • Died on February 19, 1988 in Great Barrington, MA, USA

Major Publications



Eponymous terms


Resident Medical Officer currently working in Emergency Department at Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital. Pianist and avid Golfer  | LinkedIn |

BA MA (Oxon) MBChB (Edin) FACEM FFSEM. Emergency physician, Sir Charles Gairdner Hospital.  Passion for rugby; medical history; medical education; and asynchronous learning #FOAMed evangelist. Co-founder and CTO of Life in the Fast lane | Eponyms | Books | Twitter |

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