Man lives more than a year without a heart and plays basketball


A 25-year-old in Michigan achieved a remarkable feat. For 555 days, he lived --device-assisted -- without a heart after his failing one was removed and he had to await a transplant.

Stan Larkin was diagnosed, with familial cardiomyopathy, a condition that slowly causes heart failure, CNET reports. In December 2014, Larkin had to have his failing heart removed and he became the first patient in Michigan to use the SynCardia Freedom Portable Driver, a machine that weighs around 13.5 pounds and uses compressed air to pump blood through the body.

Michigan Live reports Larkin had to carry the device with him every day for the past 16 months. "He just really thrived on the device," Dr. Jonathan Haft, his cardiac surgeon, said. "I think the Freedom driver had to be exchanged about 10 times when he was at home because this thing wasn't built for pickup basketball. He really pushed the envelope. Continue reading

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