55 year old man literally lived heartless. Find out how?
Medical technology has become advanced to a level where human life can be saved from almost any kind of injury or trauma.
Prosthetic human organs of all kinds have been developed and the life expectancy that was merely in 50s and 60s a few years back has been increased to 70 and 80 years thanks to wonderful advancements in medicines and health care techniques.
But what is most shocking advancement in medical science is the innovations that have taken place in order to protect and save lives anyway possible. Surgery of different kinds, replacement parts made of synthetic materials which prolong and replace original organs and keep the workings of the body in rhythm.
Here is one such story of a man without a heart.
1 The Patient Craig Lewis
55 year old Craig Lewis was suffering from a debilitating heart condition called Amyloidosis. It’s a rare autoimmune disease that fills internal organs with a sticky protein that causes rapid heart, kidney and liver failure. Without immediate intervention Lewis would have likely died within days. Actually, the doctors gave him 12 days to live.
Patients with this disease are not contenders for heart transplantation due to the possibility of recurrence in the transplanted heart.
2 Dr. Billy Cohn and Dr. Bud Frazier come to rescue
Dr. Billy Cohn and Dr. Bud Frazier who are from Texas Heart Institute came to Craig’s rescue by suggesting a novel solution for Craig’s heart problem.
These two doctors have invented a continuous flow device which is installed in place of the heart and which assists in continuous blood flow in the body with the help of blades. The doctors took the permission of Craig’s wife Linda to install the device in Craig in order to prolong his life.
3 The continuous flow device
Dr. Cohn and Dr. Frazier created a device called Total Artificial Heart (TAH). The device was first tested on cows and calves. They removed the animals’ hearts and implanted the total artificial heart device in its place. By the next day, the calves were doing everything and everyday activities like eating, sleeping, and moving but this time, without a heart pumping blood through their bodies.
‘If you listened to (the cow’s) chest with a stethoscope, you wouldn’t hear a heartbeat,’ Dr Cohn told NPR last June. ‘If you hooked her up to an EKG, she’d be flat-lined.’
4 The device is transplanted into Craig
With Craig’s wife Linda’s permission, Dr. Cohn and Dr. Frazier implanted the artificial heart into Craig. First they removed Craig’s heart and fitted the total artificial heart that would allow the blood to circulate in his body without a beat or pulse.
Within 48 hours of the operation, Craig was up and doing his work on laptop from his hospital bed. And when the doctors checked for his heartbeat, the only thing they could hear was a whirr of rotating blades and there was no pulse present and even the EKG showed his had flat lined. Thus he became the first human ever to live without a heart and a pulse.
Dr. Cohn and Dr. Frazier proved that their heart worked perfectly fine. But after 5 weeks, Craig’s health deteriorated due to the disease having affected his kidneys and liver. Family of the patient requested the life support system to be disconnected and Lewis passed away.
But this proved that Dr. Cohn’s and Dr. Frazier’s invention worked perfectly.