For 118 Days, This Teen Lived Without a Heart

When doctors told 14-year-old D’Zhana Simmons that she would receive a transplant for her enlarged heart, she was ecstatic. But then, her new heart failed and doctors had to remove it immediately. They didn’t have another heart on deck, and Simmons was already weakened from the first surgery, so her doctors had to think of something fast.

For four months, they used two artificial pumps to maintain her body’s blood flow. Normally, artificial pumps are used while there is a heart in the body already. Because of Simmons’ age and the fact that she didn’t have a heart at all, doctors were surprised over how well these artificial pumps helped her until the day of her second heart transplant.

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