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First Patient to Survive Artificial Heart Surgery

By spaceghoti in News
Tue Jul 03, 2001 at 03:31:23 PM EST
Tags: News (all tags)

CNN reports about AbioMed's first successful artificial heart implantation in Louisville, Kentucky. The name of the patient has not been released, but this technology offers new hope for people suffering heart problems.

The AbioCor heart is not like the Jarvik 7 which kept Dr. Barney Clark alive for 112 days after his natural heart was surgically removed. Clark's problem was that the Jarvik 7 was an external machine, and the pumps and hoses leading into his chest left him open for infection and strokes. The AbioCor represents a step forward in that it is fully implantable and therefore reduces the chance of infection.

Furthermore, doctors working with AbioMed are stressing that this is not a miracle technology. There's still the risk of infection and stroke, even if it is reduced.

"We'd like the public to have rational expectations," said Dr. Mehmet Oz. "Don't treat a failure of the device as a failure of the technology. We never flew across the world in our first endeavor."

AbioMed's webpage states their focus is to produced technology "designed to complement and/or simulate the heart's natural pumping action." In other words, when they don't have to replace the heart, they won't; they'll just try to supplement it as with the pacemaker.

Maybe we're not too far away from receiving bionic implants?


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Artificial organs
o Never never ever. 3%
o Once they work out the kinks. 18%
o If I really need it. 15%
o If it improves quality of life. 25%
o Cyber me, baby! 37%

Votes: 32
Results | Other Polls

Related Links
o AbioMed
o artificial heart implantation
o AbioCor
o Jarvik 7
o Also by spaceghoti

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First Patient to Survive Artificial Heart Surgery | 8 comments (5 topical, 3 editorial, 0 hidden)
I wonder when (4.00 / 2) (#1)
by Xeriar on Tue Jul 03, 2001 at 01:51:36 PM EST

Peoplewill start mass hysteria about cyborgs. Should be fun. Can't be too far off :-)

When I'm feeling blue, I start breathing again.
I dont think so (4.00 / 2) (#5)
by 42 on Tue Jul 03, 2001 at 05:06:49 PM EST

You are confused. The most important characteristic of a "cyborg" is the artificial brain. People have had artificial parts for quite some time now (they are called prosthetics), yet no-one has been calling such people cyborgs. We are still a long long way from true AI which would enable the creation of an artifical brain.

[ Parent ]

whops... (4.50 / 2) (#6)
by bored on Tue Jul 03, 2001 at 06:09:02 PM EST

I think you are the one that is a little confused. A Cyborg is a human/machine mix. According to dictionary.com Cyborg: "A human who has certain physiological processes aided or controlled by mechanical or electronic devices." Traditionally the brain must still exist in some form or another to be a cyborg, although i think that cyborg is often applied to a robot/machine utilizing biological components as well. It all depends on your definition of 'human' i guess. If human is the body but not the brain then yes your correct. I tend to think that the 'human conscience' must still exist for the person be be a human.

I don't agree with the original poster either though. The term cyborg won't be utilized to describe these people until they are more machine than human... People with prosthetic limbs today classify as cyborgs.

[ Parent ]
Cyborg hysteria (4.50 / 2) (#7)
by thejeff on Thu Jul 05, 2001 at 08:00:46 AM EST

It probably won't get serious until artificial parts start getting better than natural ones. Few are going to be real upset about replacing damaged or missing body parts with substitutes that give some of the functionality back. It's when we start replacing functioning parts with artificial ones that work as well or better. Wait for the uproar over the first Olympic athlete with cybernetic legs.

[ Parent ]
When am I going to get my... (4.00 / 3) (#3)
by MicroBerto on Tue Jul 03, 2001 at 02:53:07 PM EST

I'm still waiting for my mute button on my ears! Whenever the spouse/boss/teacher/mate/parent starts lecturing -- click -- and you have complete serenity! :)

- GAIM: MicroBerto
Bertoline - My comic strip
First Patient to Survive Artificial Heart Surgery | 8 comments (5 topical, 3 editorial, 0 hidden)
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