Permanent Mechanical Heart A First For Children

A fifteen year-old boy is the first child in the world to receive a permanent mechanical heart.


(Mechanical heart)

Dr Amodeo said the heart is 2.5in long and was placed inside the left ventricle and its connection with the ascending aorta. He said: ‘The device is an electrically activated hydraulic pump and is entirely located inside the thorax, in order to reduce the risk of infection. ‘It is powered through a plug positioned behind the left ear and connected to a battery that the patient holds on a belt and is charged during the night like a mobile phone. ‘This is the first time such a device has been placed in a young child and should give him an improved quality of life even though he is suffering from Duchenne’s syndrome. Dr. Antonio Amodeo led the team that carried out the 10 hour breakthrough operation ‘The family was happy for the child to go through the surgery and have the artificial heart implanted because he was days away from dying.’ Dr Amodeo said the device weighs just over 3oz compared to adult ones which can weigh 2lb and the boy is expected to remain in intensive care for another two weeks.

Fans of writer Philip K. Dick recall the artif-org from his 1964 novel Cantata 140:

George Walt's corporate existence proved the workability of wholly mechanical organs...

"...if they keep after me, or if they won't make a deal regarding artif-org construction - then it'll be necessary to do something.

Via Daily Mail.

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