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Apologetics Press :: Reason & Revelation
March 2002 - 1[9]:12-R

In the News: Evolution—The Heart of the Matter
by Brad Harrub, Ph.D.

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On December 13, 2001, Abiomed, a medical technology company, posted a press release on their Web site announcing the death of a second AbioCor™ artificial heart recipient. This announcement came just thirteen days after the announcement that the first patient enrolled in the AbioCor™ clinical trial had died. It is with sincere sadness that we convey our sympathy to those families that are mourning the loss of these two individuals. In light of these heart-rending events, however, it is important for us to contemplate the bigger picture. Can man make a replacement heart that works, and if not, why not? The quest to design and manufacture an artificial heart started during World War II. During this period, medics often were called upon to remove shell fragments from soldiers, and a value suddenly was placed on a heart replacement.

There have been many attempts to create an artificial heart—the most famous being the Jarvik-7. However, patients receiving these artificial hearts all suffered from numerous complications (hemorrhage, stroke, sepsis, etc.). In addition, patients were forced to live a severely restricted lifestyle. The latest attempt is the AbioCor™ Implantable Replacement Heart, which is fabricated from plastic and titanium and weighs less than 2 pounds.

Considering the millions of dollars spent to produce this new artificial heart, and the countless hours of research and development that were required, one would expect that this device would be nothing less than a state-of-the-art wonder! However, Robert Tools, the first patient to receive an AbioCor™ heart, lived only 151 days. The person who received the fourth implant survived only 56 days. Why is this the case? Haven’t evolutionists frequently reminded us that humans “evolved” over millions of years from an amoeba-like creature? If the human heart is merely another product of the naturalistic process of organic evolution (which, by definition, has no direction or intelligent design behind it), then humans (who can direct and design intricate processes) shouldn’t have any problem recreating it, should they? Yet millions of dollars, and countless hours of intense effort by hundreds of highly trained researchers, have been able to extend human life only a hundred days or so?! Could it be that we have not given God enough credit for His ability to design and create the amazing human body?

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