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Mechanical hearts are buying time for patients and groundbreaking research

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Mechanical hearts are buying time for patients and groundbreaking research
Marva Lorde

​​​​​​​Marva Lorde relied on a left ventricular assist device (LVAD) for two years before receiving a heart transplant.

Combined with stem cell technology, a patient's own heart can start pumping again​

When Marva Lorde went to bed on the night of October 25, 2007, nothing seemed out of the ordinary. The former bank employee had been enjoying a life of leisure after working for 34 years, and she was looking forward to going to her regular workout class in the morning. At some point during the night, though, a feeling of indigestion came over her, and soon after the clamminess and vomiting began. Despite feeling ill, she drove herself to the hospital, where she learned she had experienced a massive heart attack and had to stay in the Coronary Intensive Care Unit for the next 10 days. “There was no pain, but on the inside damage was happening,” she says. “I thought it was just a virus.”