The Freedom Driver is a device that keeps patients' artificial heart pumping while they await organ transplants. It has currently been fitted to Stan Larkin, a patient at the University of Michigan Frankel Cardiovascular Center. Whereas heart failure patients are normally confined to bed by a massive device that keeps blood pumping through their veins, the Freedom Driver allows them to go about their normal lives while they wait for a transplant.
The Freedom Driver delivers compressed air into the heart ventricles via a pair of tubes.Weighing only 13 pounds, it fits comfortable inside a purpose-built backpack and performs the same functions as the 418-pound machine that patients are more accustomed to.
Patients like Larkin who meet certain discharge criteria are allowed to go home with their portable device while they await a heart transplant.
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