Surgery: A Better Half-Heart

Inventive, ingenious and daring surgery took another step last week toward the ultimate goal of replacing human hearts hopelessly damaged by disease. The operation at Houston's Methodist Hospital was not, as racing-pulse press reports first proclaimed, "history's first implant of an artificial heart," but it incorporated famed Surgeon Michael E. DeBakey's latest refinements of a device on which he and his colleagues at Baylor and Rice universities have worked for eight years. And it gave a doomed patient renewed hope of life.

Marcel L. DeRudder, 65, a former miner, long a victim...

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