We may one day soon be surrounded by people who are alive, but have no pulse. Heart disease is mankind’s biggest cause of death, but one doctor is out to change that dramatically. Dr. William Cohn developed the rhythmless heart, likening it to other inventions that don’t mimic nature perfectly. Much like fixed wing aircraft versus birds flapping their wings, this artificial heart takes a known premise of nature and moves it in an entirely new direction.
The heart is one of the first inventions to actually take apart the old belief that the body can only work the way evolution developed it to. The heart’s beat, according to Cohn, is incidental and not necessary to the proper health of the patient. The new heart isn’t an artificial machine that a patient is hooked up to, just to keep them alive while in the hospital. It is an actual device that remains in the human body until a human heart becomes available.
In the future, similar artificial hearts may be used indefinitely, giving a person a full lifetime without a pulse. We may be yet another step closer to the promise of immortality. Whether we ever actually achieve immortality in the physical sense is unknown, but technologies such as these are slowly making it a viable possibility.