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, M.D., (born 13 November 1935, The Hague) is a Dutch cardiologist who is considered one of the founding fathers of the cardiology subspecialty known as clinical cardiac electrophysiology. Clinical cardiac electrophysiology enables patients with cardiac arrhythmmias to be subjected to catheter electrode mapping and stimulation studies. Paul Puech, first in Mexico and later in France; Benjamin Scherlag and Onkar Narula in the USA; and Dirk Durrer and Philippe Coumel in Europe were the field’s pioneers in the 1950s and 1960s. The field’s second wave of innovators used these techniques to unravel the mechanisms of tachycardia in humans and set the bases for their treatment. Among them, Hein Wellens in Europe and Kenneth Rosen, John Gallagher, and Mark Josephson in the USA had the greatest impact as researchers and teachers. Josephson is the author of the first and most successful textbook of clinical cardiac electrophysiology, now in its fourth edition.
Wellens, known among European cardiologists as “the giant of Maastricht”, has for many years been associated with the University of Limburg School of Medicine in Maastricht, Netherlands. At his department of cardiology, many future clinical cardiac electrophysiologists trained from 1976 until his retirement in 2002.
As a pupil and collaborator of the late Professor Dirk Durrer in Amsterdam, Dr. Wellens was involved in the early developments in programmed electrical stimulation of the heart in patients with the Wolff-Parkinson-White syndrome. In these patients, cardiac arrhythmias it was shown for the very first time that were first shown to be possibly initiated and terminated by critically timed premature beats. In 1971, he reported on the use of programmed electrical stimulation of the heart in patients with atrial flutter, AV nodal tachycardia, and accessory atrioventricular connections. In 1972, he showed that the arrhythmia of patients with ventricular tachycardia could also reproducibly be initiated and terminated by timed premature stimuli. These investigations were the basis for the new surgical and pacing approaches to the treatment of cardiac arrhythmias that became known as “cardiac electrophysiology”. to be Wellens also demonstrated that the reproducible initiation and termination of arrhythmias by programmed electrical stimulation of the heart allowed the study of the effect of antiarrhythmic drugs on the mechanism of the arrhythmia. In 1977, he moved to the new University of Limburg in Maastricht, Netherlands, to develop academic cardiology there. Starting from scratch, he created an internationally known center for the study and treatment of cardiac arrhythmias.
For Petra Kvitova, everything changed thanks to a single, simple text message. It was February, and the Czech tennis standout had just landed in Doha, Qatar, for the next stop on the hectic tennis circuit. Seven months after winning her second Wimbledon title and four months after clinching another Fed Cup, she ought to have been on a high. But something was wrong. She felt empty, listless and, most worrying of all, unable to explain why.
Kvitova was preparing for her second-round match against Serbia’s Jelena Jankovic when she checked her text messages. Among them was one from her longtime coach, David Kotyza.
“I think it’s a good idea to take a break,” he said. “Otherwise, I don’t know how long you are going to keep on feeling this way.”
Taken aback by the message, the 25-year-old knew something had to be done. She thought it over “for four days and for four nights” until she realized Kotyza was right. The pair had discussed her feelings in January during a tournament in Sydney in a conversation that had Kvitova on the verge of tears. Mentally and physically, she was exhausted.
CBSSports.com wire reports
Dec. 26, 2012 9:30 PM ET
Doctors advised Jones to stop playing after he underwent a procedure Dec. 18 to locate and correct an atrial flutter. He faces more procedures to treat the heart condition that caused him to faint before a game three weeks ago.
He said he wanted to let their words soak in a few days before he made his announcement this week.
“My life is more important,” he said Thursday as teammates practiced behind him at Vinardi Athletic Center. “The game has gotten me this far. I’m the same person with or without it. But right now, and maybe forever, I’m just stepping away from the game.”
Coach Greg McDermott said he sensed after he visited with Jones two weeks ago that it was doubtful Jones would return.
Jones had an initial health scare in 2007, when he needed an infected heart valve replaced. Doctors said the first procedure revealed additional concerns with Jones’ heart. Jones said he’ll undergo a second procedure in January to diagnose the other problems, and more treatment probably will follow.