The recurrent artery of Heubner: Otto Heubner's description of the artery and his influence on pediatrics in Germany

Restricted access

✓ Although the recurrent artery of Heubner is one of the best known cerebral arteries, little has been written in the neurosurgical or anatomical literature about its discovery. The artery is of primary importance to cerebrovascular surgeons, who identify it during clipping of anterior communicating artery aneurysms. Johann Otto Leonhardt Heubner (1843–1926), who described this artery in 1872, is better known as the father of German pediatrics. He was appointed to the first professorship in Germany exclusively devoted to pediatrics at the Charité Children's Clinic of Berlin University. Although he initially studied internal medicine in Leipzig under Carl Reinhold August Wunderlich and Ernst Leberecht Wagner, his early research involved anatomical studies of the circulation of the brain, from which he described syphilitic endarteritis (Heubner's disease). Finding morphological studies inconclusive, he turned to more physiological experiments. Together with the physiologist Max Rubner, Heubner performed important studies on energy metabolism in infancy, creating the notion of the nutrition quotient. In this article the authors review Heubner's life and scientific discoveries.

Article Information

Address reprint requests to: Rafael J. Tamargo, M.D., Department of Neurosurgery, The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine, Meyer 7–113, 600 North Wolfe Street, Baltimore, Maryland 21287. email: rtamarg@jhmi.edu.

© AANS, except where prohibited by US copyright law.

Headings

Figures

  • View in gallery

    Photograph of Johann Otto Leonhardt Heubner taken in his later years. From Heubner O: Festschrift. Berlin: Julius Springer, 1913. Reprinted with permission of Springer-Verlag GmbH & Co. KG.

  • View in gallery

    A reproduction of the first page of Heubner's manuscript in which he identifies the medial striate artery. From Heubner O: [On the topography of the nutritional zones of the individual brain arteries.] Zentrabl Med Wiss 10:817–821, 1872 (Ger).

  • View in gallery

    Drawing by H.F. Aitken illustrating the circulation to the left basal ganglia. The basal ganglia are represented by the caudate (1), putamen (2), globus pallidus (3), thalamus (4), and internal capsule (5). The anterior circulation is illustrated by the internal carotid artery ([ICA] 9), middle cerebral artery ([MCA] 10), and ACA (7). Branching off the ACA near the ACoA (8) is the vessel that Aitken refers to in his report as Heubner's artery or system (14). As depicted in this illustration, Heubner's artery supplies the caudate, putamen, and anterior limb of the internal capsule. Other major arteries in the drawing include the anterior choroidal artery (11), posterior communicating artery (12), and posterior cerebral artery ([PCA] 13). From Aitken HF: A report on the circulation of the lobar ganglia: made to Dr. James B. Ayer. Boston Med Surg J Suppl 160:25, 1909.

  • View in gallery

    Illustration from Shellshear's article in which the medial striate artery is first referred to as the “recurrent artery” (arrow). From Shellshear JL: The basal arteries of the forebrain and their functional significance. J Anat 55:27–35, 1920. Rprinted with permission of Cambridge University Press.

References

  • 1.

    Aitkens HF: A report on the circulation of the lobar ganglia: made to Dr. James B. Ayer. Boston Med Surg J 160:251909Aitkens HF: A report on the circulation of the lobar ganglia: made to Dr. James B. Ayer. Boston Med Surg J 160:25 1909

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 2.

    Aschoff AKremer PHashemi Bet al: The scientific history of hydrocephalus and its treatment. Neurosurg Rev 22:67951999Aschoff A Kremer P Hashemi B et al: The scientific history of hydrocephalus and its treatment. Neurosurg Rev 22:67–95 1999

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 3.

    Braun W: German pediatrics in Nichols BLBallabriga AKretchmer N (eds): History of Pediatrics 1850–1950. New York: Raven Press1991 pp 2330Braun W: German pediatrics in Nichols BL Ballabriga A Kretchmer N (eds): History of Pediatrics 1850–1950. New York: Raven Press 1991 pp 23–30

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 4.

    Critchley M: The anterior cerebral artery, and its syndromes. Brain 53:1201651930Critchley M: The anterior cerebral artery and its syndromes. Brain 53:120–165 1930

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 5.

    Dicke WK: [Therapy of celiac disease.] Nederl Tijd Schrgeneesk 95:1241291951 (Dtch)Dicke WK: [Therapy of celiac disease.] Nederl Tijd Schrgeneesk 95:124–129 1951 (Dtch)

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 6.

    Duret H: [Anatomic research on the circulation of the brain.] Archiv Physiol Normal Pathol 70: 1874 (Fr)Duret H: [Anatomic research on the circulation of the brain.] Archiv Physiol Normal Pathol 70: 1874 (Fr)

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 7.

    Gomes FDujovny MUmansky Fet al: Microsurgical anatomy of the recurrent artery of Heubner. J Neurosurg 60:1301391984Gomes F Dujovny M Umansky F et al: Microsurgical anatomy of the recurrent artery of Heubner. J Neurosurg 60:130–139 1984

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 8.

    Heubner O: [On the etiology and diagnosis of cerebrospinal meningitis.] Dtsch Med Wchschr 22:4234241896 (Ger)Heubner O: [On the etiology and diagnosis of cerebrospinal meningitis.] Dtsch Med Wchschr 22:423–424 1896 (Ger)

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 9.

    Heubner O: [On the topography of the nutritional zones of the individual brain arteries. Zentrabl Med Wiss 10:8178211872 (Ger)Heubner O: [On the topography of the nutritional zones of the individual brain arteries. Zentrabl Med Wiss 10:817–821 1872 (Ger)

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 10.

    Oehme J: [The 150th birthday of Otto Heubner, January 21, 1993.] Monatsschr Kinderheilkd 141:791993 (Ger)Oehme J: [The 150th birthday of Otto Heubner January 21 1993.] Monatsschr Kinderheilkd 141:7–9 1993 (Ger)

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 11.

    Oehme J: [Promotion of Otto Heubner, founder of the Leipzig pediatric clinic (when and how was O. Heubner promoted?).] Sudhoffs Arch Z Wissenschaftsgsch 77:2362391992 (Ger)Oehme J: [Promotion of Otto Heubner founder of the Leipzig pediatric clinic (when and how was O. Heubner promoted?).] Sudhoffs Arch Z Wissenschaftsgsch 77:236–239 1992 (Ger)

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 12.

    Peiper O: [Otto Heubner (1843–1926) and the pediatrics of his time.] Dtsch Gesundheitsw 20:228122881965 (Ger)Peiper O: [Otto Heubner (1843–1926) and the pediatrics of his time.] Dtsch Gesundheitsw 20:2281–2288 1965 (Ger)

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 13.

    Perlmutter DRhoton AL Jr: Microsurgical anatomy of the anterior cerebral-anterior communicating-recurrent artery complex. J Neurosurg 45:2592721976Perlmutter D Rhoton AL Jr: Microsurgical anatomy of the anterior cerebral-anterior communicating-recurrent artery complex. J Neurosurg 45:259–272 1976

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 14.

    Perlmutter DRhoton AL Jr: Microsurgical anatomy of the distal anterior cerebral artery. J Neurosurg 49:2042281978Perlmutter D Rhoton AL Jr: Microsurgical anatomy of the distal anterior cerebral artery. J Neurosurg 49:204–228 1978

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 15.

    Shellshear JL: The basal arteries of the forebrain and their functional significance. J Anat 55:27351920Shellshear JL: The basal arteries of the forebrain and their functional significance. J Anat 55:27–35 1920

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 16.

    Weichselbaum A: [Concerning the etiology of acute cerebrospinal meningitis.] Fortschr Dtsch Med 573:6206261887 (Ger)Weichselbaum A: [Concerning the etiology of acute cerebrospinal meningitis.] Fortschr Dtsch Med 573:620–626 1887 (Ger)

    • Search Google Scholar
    • Export Citation
  • 17.

    Yaşargil MG: Microneurosurgery. Stuttgart: Thieme Vol 11984Yaşargil MG: Microneurosurgery. Stuttgart: Thieme Vol 1 1984

TrendMD

Metrics

Metrics

All Time Past Year Past 30 Days
Abstract Views 390 391 66
Full Text Views 170 142 1
PDF Downloads 160 129 1
EPUB Downloads 0 0 0

PubMed

Google Scholar