Man without heart dies after six months

CZECH REPUBLIC - A Czech man whose heart had been replaced with two mechanical pumps died six months after the surgery, aged 37.

Jakub Halik had been unable to take the drugs required to receive a transplant due to an earlier diagnosis of cancer.

After the surgery, he had to carry a battery pack to keep his heart pumping but reported feeling physically healthy.

He was even able to exercise at the gym.

The operation was done last April by Jan Pirk, director of cardiology at the Institute of Clinical and Experimental Medicine in Prague. The team designed two plastic pumps to perform the roles of the right and left sides of the heart.

The doctors said a liver problem caused his death, not the artificial heart. A post-mortem is still under way.

The only other person to have received the same surgery, a man in Texas, survived for only a week.

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