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Heart and Blood Vessels


Admission requirements

Students can enroll for a half minor if they have obtained 60 credits from the first year.

International Students should have an adequate background in Medicine. Admission will be considered based on CV and motivation letter.
For more information, please contact


In ten consecutive weeks the students will be introduced to the most current concepts in the pathogenesis, diagnosis and therapy of the most common forms of cardiovascular disease. The course will start with a basic introduction into the anatomy, physiology and haemostatic mechanisms in the cardiovascular system. Next, the students will be introduced in the pathogenesis of macrovascular disease (e.g. atherosclerosis, coronary artery disease, ischemic peripheral disease) and microvascular diseases (e.g. ischemic heart disease, heart failure). Current options for diagnosis and therapy will be discussed as well as the current approaches in epidemiology and the use of biomarkers for cardiovascular disease.

A special feature of this ½ minor is that we will also aim to update the students on various “molecular medicine” approaches that are currently employed to develop novel experimental therapies. Last days of the week will be devoted to introduce the students to innovative preclinical (animal) models that are used by the members of the profile area to study the pathophysiology and experimental therapies of the topic of the week. Where relevant, current insights in molecular backgrounds of the innovative strategies will be reviewed.

At the beginning of the course you will receive a case description of a patient that typifies the cardiovascular disease states that are addressed in the consecutive weeks (e.g. acute coronary syndrome, hearth failure, diabetes with cardiovascular complications etc.). Following every weekly course, the students are asked to submit a so-called Etivity via a weekly Blog on Blackboard. These Etivities are meant to discuss the relevance of the topics reviewed in the past week to the case they were assigned to study. Etivities will be assessable to your colleague-students who will give short comments via the blog on Blackboard that can be helpful to you. In the course of the ½ minor these Etivities will accumulate into a document that includes aspects of the etiology, epidemiology, pathogenesis diagnosis and therapeutic approaches that are relevant to the individual cases of the particular student. In the final week you will be asked to write a comprehensive case report including diagnosis, etiology, potential treatment, prognosis and future therapeutic options. This case report will serve a main part of the examination process.

Course objectives

  1. Evaluate the pathogenic molecular mechanism(s) that might underlie the complaints of a patient diagnosed with a cardiovascular disorder and relate these pathogenic mechanisms to signs and symptoms
  2. Be able to motivate and interpret conventional and innovative diagnostic plans that could be applied based on a differential diagnosis
  3. Develop a “state of the art” therapeutic plan based on the results from diagnostic tests and corresponding diagnosis and describe the method to check the effect of the intervention
  4. Critically assess and communicate recent high impact publications in cardiovascular medicine with regard to methodology, pit falls and limitations.
  5. Explain the molecular mechanisms underlying innovative therapeutic strategies and relevant experimental animal models for cardiovascular disease
  6. Be able to make an evaluation of the feasibility, clinical potential and societal and legislative relevance of novel innovative therapeutic strategies for specific patient cases.
  7. Write a case-report with emphasis on the integration of conventional and innovative diagnostics and therapeutic strategies.
  8. Identify relevant literature related to the topics of the course and the selected case report.
  9. Demonstrate the ability to implement feedback to the etivities and case report.


All course and group schedules are published on our LUMC scheduling website or on the LUMC scheduling app.

Mode of instruction

Lectures, practicals, workgroups and patient demonstrations.

Course load

Total course load is the amount of EC’s multiplied with 28 hours.

Assessment method

  • Oral presentation (pass/fail)

  • Written exam (3x): open questions (50% of final grade)

  • Cumulative blog (pass/fail)

  • Case report (50% of final grade)

The exam dates can be found on the schedule website.


Blackboard will be used during this course.

Reading list

  • Kumar, Abbas and Fausto. Robbins and Cotran, Pathologic Basis of Disease. Elsevier Saunders, 8th edition, 2009.

  • Kumar & Clark’s. Clinical Medicine. 7th Edition, 2009.

  • Boron and Boulpaep, Medical Physiology 2nd ed, 2012.

Published papers that are referred to during the lectures will be provided through blackboard.


Students are required to register for exams through uSis. The registration for a working group is done by handing in your ‘studieplan’.


Prof. dr. A.J. van Zonneveld

Prof. dr. D.E. Atsma

Drs. G.L. Tiemeier