Transplants: An Act of Desperation

For nearly 65 hours, an artificial heart beat within Haskell Karp's chest. Then, 30 hours after the 8-oz. plastic device was replaced by the heart of a 40-year-old woman, Karp died last week in Houston's St. Luke's Episcopal Hospital, succumbing to pneumonia and kidney failure. By becoming the first human recipient of a completely artificial heart, Karp had briefly raised all sorts of expectations the world over. His death immediately touched off an angry controversy over the wisdom of trying out the device without further experimentation. It also brought into the open...

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