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Year : 2017  |  Volume : 1  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 1-2

Preface of heart and mind

Peking University Sixth Hospital (Institute of Mental Health); National Clinical Research Center for Mental Disorders & Key Laboratory of Mental Health, Ministry of Health, Peking University, Beijing, China

Date of Web Publication24-May-2017

Correspondence Address:
Lin Lu
51, HuaYuan Bei Road, Haidain District, Beijing 100191
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/hm.hm_6_17

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How to cite this article:
Lu L. Preface of heart and mind. Heart Mind 2017;1:1-2

How to cite this URL:
Lu L. Preface of heart and mind. Heart Mind [serial online] 2017 [cited 2023 Mar 23];1:1-2. Available from: http://www.heartmindjournal.org/text.asp?2017/1/1/1/206969

There is an ample cause for joy in the sun-soaked scenes of mornings in early spring. The blossoms open, the birds sing, and the air is filled with the scents of new plants and soil. This year, we will add yet another cause to this list; at the end of 2 years of hard work, Heart and Mind (HM) will finally publish its initial issue. We hope that as this journal grows, it will serve as a forum for clinical case discussion, academic dialog, and the presentation of research results for the entire community of specialists working in cardiology, psychology, psychiatry, general practitioners, and the basic scientists whose work informs these disciplines and enlightens us about their interconnections.

Today, it is generally acknowledged that cardiovascular disease and psychophysiology are the critical foci of this century's life science research. Accordingly, it is unsurprising that the hybrid discipline of psychocardiology, which aims to discover more about the many and complex connections between diseases of the heart and the mind, has become a highly active and promising field.

Research conducted over the past five decades has, by yielding molecular level understanding of the interconnection between these systems, built an increasingly firm foundation for our current understanding of psychocardiological disease. Parallel advances have also been made in diagnostic technology. These changes have allowed clinicians to transition from traditional, experience-based diagnosis to computed tomography, magnetic resonance imaging, angiography, positron emission tomography, and other more sophisticated visual diagnostic modalities, permitting consideration of changes in function down to the cellular level.

The emergence of new biomedical technology has also yielded many novel avenues for treatment across a wide array of pressing clinical issues. Some prominent examples include percutaneous coronary intervention, radiofrequency ablation, implantable cardioverter defibrillation, and stem cell transplantation.

Exciting and promising as this technological progress undoubtedly is, we must never allow it to distract from the patient centeredness that we, as clinicians, believe to be the heart of medical practice. William Osler, the founder of the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, once said, “Medicine is a science of uncertainty, and an art of probability.” Thus and particularly in light of what we now know to be the impact of emotion on the prognosis of disease, it is imperative to keep the emotional experience of our patients at the center of what we do.

Moreover, the complexity of the practice of medicine, as well as the diversity of life that it exists to heal, precludes deterministic certainty. A patient will always be more than a collection of data, no matter how sophisticated or fine grained our ability to generate that data might become. Every patient is unique and deserves our utmost respect. As biomedical advances continue to fill our minds with information, our hearts must remain filled with care for our patients.

The days of an exclusively biological approach to the practice of medicine are gone and have given way to the biopsychosocial model that emphasizes this patient centeredness. In cardiovascular practice, this has ushered in a shift in clinical prevention and treatment strategies. Patient emotion and insight is now incorporated into disease prognosis and prevention and considered across the whole treatment course. Naturally, given its concern for emotional causality, this development is of particular importance to the practice of psychocadiology.

The journal HM aims, in keeping with the humanistic values that are fundamental to medical practice, to become a preeminent source of insight for its readership on the interface between psychiatric and cardiovascular disease. It is our hope that these insights will help readers to develop the technical capacity, research capabilities, communication skills, and empathy that must all be marshaled together for the effective care of patients with psychocardiological disease.

The journal presents a wide variety of article types, including original research, editorials, reviews, discussions, interviews, clinical reports, and commentaries. All submissions should be academically rigorous, readable, plausible yet innovative, and focused on interconnections. By stimulating interface between theory and practice, the traditional and the modern, and the psychological and the physiological, HM hopes to stimulate academic debate and to be a place where academic democracy can thrive.

Through all our efforts, we will uphold the sanctity of life, reverence for those in the history of medicine who have provided us the means to do so, respect for innovation in the spirit of public service, and resolve to question new technologies if these are not humanistic in their application, professionalism, and objectivity.

In doing so, I believe that HM would have a better future ahead under our joint efforts.


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