Dolf Bachmann - World’s First Angioplasty Patient Now 68 Years Old and “Happy All Around”

On Sept. 16, 1977, Dolf Bachmann, then 38 years old, became the first patient to undergo balloon angioplasty. At 68 years old Mr. Bachmann described himself “in excellent condition, free of complications and happy all around.” Having sold a business that he built over 25 years, he says he enjoys an “excellent life,” with hobbies including hiking, Nordic walking, skiing, working in his garden and playing cards.

When Mr. Bachmann arrived at University Hospital in Zurich, Switzerland, on Sept. 15, 1977, doctors confirmed his condition: angina pectoris – chest pain caused by too little blood (and oxygen)  reaching the heart muscle due to blockage in the artery.