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ANDRÉ FRÉDÉRIC COURNAND
September 24, 1895–February 19, 1988
BY EWALD R. WEIBEL
THE SUBTITLE OF André Cournand's autobiography—The Intellectual Adventures of a Medical Scientist—conveys the essence of his life. As a basic scientist he was a medical man concerned about helping his patients through fundamental research. As a medical scientist he was adventurous, just as he had dared to climb high mountains in his younger years. His courage to introduce a catheter into a man's heart changed physiology, but only because of its intellectual backing by a rigorous analytical concept. André Cournand was an artist among scientists; he combined imagination with discipline and rigor in his analytical approach, a sense of drama with critical thinking about the course to take both in his research projects and, in later years, in his concerns about shaping the future.
André Frédéric Cournand was born in Paris, where he lived the first thirty-five years of his long life until his emigration to the United States. He felt very much French and European. His mother was the daughter of an Alsatian businessman, and his father descended from a Corsican author and poet who had participated in the French revolution of 1848. As Cournand writes in his autobiography, the influence of his mother was to give him a strong sense for the