An artificial heart is a device that replaces the heart. Artificial hearts are typically used to bridge the time to heart transplantation, or to permanently replace the heart in case heart transplantation is impossible. Although other similar inventions preceded it going back to the late 1940s, the first artificial heart to be successfully implanted in a human was the Jarvik-7, designed by Robert Jarvik and implemented in 1982. The first two patients to receive these hearts, Barney Clark and William Schroeder, survived 112 and 620 days beyond their surgeries, respectively.
An artificial heart is distinct from a ventricular assist device designed to support a failing heart. It is also distinct from a cardiopulmonary bypass machine, which is an external device used to provide the functions of both the heart and lungs and are only used for a few hours at a time, most commonly during cardiac surgery.
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“Before I finally went into winter quarters in November, I used to resort to the north- east side of Walden, which the sun, reflected from the pitch pine woods and the stony shore, made the fireside of the pond; it is so much pleasanter and wholesomer to be warmed by the sun while you can be, than by an artificial fire. I thus warmed myself by the still glowing embers which the summer, like a departed hunter, had left.”
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