Today’s Extra for December 2: What Produce is In-Season in December?

What Produce is In-Season in December?

Because of modern agriculture and our ability to ship produce all over the globe, most foods are available year round. But just because we can eat a tomato in the dead of winter, doesn’t mean we should be doing it.

Eating seasonally is one of the best things you can do both for your health and for the environment. Not only does it promote a genuine connection with the earth’s resources, eating locally-grown, seasonal foods helps limit the amount of greenhouse gas emissions we generate by shipping foods where they don’t naturally belong. Not to mention seasonal produce is more nutritious!

Once upon a time, eating seasonally was the only way to survive. Today, it’s a choice — and one that has both environmental and physical impacts. Ready to start? Here’s what’s in-season in December. Yum!


1. Apples

2. Dates

3. Citrus fruit

4. Pears

5. Bananas

6. Pomegranate

7. Persimmons


1. Broccoli

2. Leeks

3. Brussels sprouts

4. Cabbage

5. Onions

6. Parsnips

7. Potatoes

8. Winter squash

9. Sweet potatoes

10. Rutabagas

11. Parsnips

12. Pumpkins

13. Kale

14. Garlic

15. Celery

16. Beets

17. Radishes

18. Turnips

No excuse to avoid those veggies now!


Source: Care2


The Moon Calendar for Sunday, Dec. 2

Moon Phase Calendar

Sunday – 2nd December 2018


Current Moon Phase: Waning Crescent

Moon Currently in the Sign of Libra

Moon in Libra:

You might have a strong need for balance and harmony now. You probably desire to keep things “nice” rather than venturing into fundamental questions in order not to disturb the peace. You must learn to share your good and bad feelings. Do not be afraid to be who you really are, despite what is expected of you.

Organs influenced by Libra Moon Sign:

Organs: Kidney, ureter, urinary bladder, veins, skin as an organ of touch, pancreas, insulin, glucagon.

These organs are now more sensitive so provide them with extra care.

Surgical operations:

Surgical operations are recommended during the Waning Moon.
However, avoid surgeries of organs under the influence of the Moon Sign.

The Old Farmer’s Almanac for Dec. 2: ALL ABOUT THE MONTH OF DECEMBER



Welcome to December! This month brings with it snow (for many), family, feasts, and fun, but remember to grab some hot cocoa during this winter month and relax when you can.

Christmas is coming, the geese are getting fat,
Please put a penny in the old man’s hat;
If you haven’t got a penny, a ha’penny will do,
If you haven’t got a ha’penny, God bless you!

Beggar’s rhyme.


December comes from the Latin word decem, meaning “ten” because this was the tenth month of the early Roman calendar.

  • Hanukkah begins at sundown on Sunday, December 2, and ends at sundown on the 10th.
  • December 6 is Saint Nicholas Day. St. Nicholas, the patron saint of children, inspires traditions around the world from hunts for presents to stockings or shoes filled with sweets.
  • December 7 is National Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day.
  • December 13 is St. Lucia’s Day, which has long been associated with festivals of light. Before the Gregorian calendar reform in 1752, her feast day occurred on the shortest day of the year (hence the saying “Lucy light, Lucy light, shortest day and longest night”).
  • December 15 is
  • December 26 is Boxing Day (Canada, UK) and the first day of Kwanzaa.
  • On the last evening of the year, December 31, kiss the person you hope to keep kissing! Discover New Years traditions from around the world.


To help you prepare for this holiday season, check out our Christmas Dinner Recipe page for all kinds of delicious Christmas recipes—from drinks to dessert.

Speaking of dessert, see our Christmas Dessert Recipes page to satisfy your sweet tooth.

Going to a party? You may enjoy our Christmas Appetizer Recipes and Christmas Party Recipes.

Baking cookies for friends and family? Visit our 12 Days of Cookies page for our favorite cookie recipes—and wash them down with George Washington’s Christmas Eggnog!

Baking with kids? Check out our list of Christmas Cookie Recipes for Kids.

Need a gift for a cook? Give him or her 118 scrumptious recipes for cookies, pies, cakes, breads, and more home-baked goods with our Everyday Baking cookbook!


This is a good time to start pruning dead and dangerous limbs from trees.

If you enjoy holiday plants, here are tips on plant care for poinsettia, Christmas cactus, and amaryllis.

As houseplants are growing more slowly in December light, cut down on watering by half until active growth resumes. Hold off on fertilizing as well. See tips on growing houseplants and check out our Growing Guides for Aloe Vera, Spider Plants, Jade, and more houseplants.


December’s full Moon, the Full Cold Moon, occurs on December 22 at 12:49 P.M. EST.

The dark winter night sky is a joy to behold. See our monthly Sky Watch for highlights of the December sky.

Look skyward on the nights of December 13 and 14 after 9 P.M. for a chance to catch a glimpse of the Geminid meteors. The Geminid meteor shower is the most active shower of the year. Check out our Geminid Meteor Shower page for more info, and see our Meteor Showers Guide for dates and viewing tips.



December’s traditional birthstone is the turquoise. It is considered a symbol of good fortune and success. Zircon and tanzanite are also considered to be December birthstones.



December’s birth flowers are the holly and the paperwhite—a relative of the daffodil with lovely white blooms.


December’s Zodiac signs are:

  • Sagittarius: November 23–December 21
  • Capricorn: December 22–January 19



Know the weather before you head off to that Christmas event or travel to grandmother’s house. We’ve posted the long range weather for December and January.

  • December changeable and mild, the whole winter will remain a child.
  • Thunder in December presages fine weather.
  • Frost on the shortest day is said to indicate a severe winter.
  • December cold, with snow, brings rye everywhere.


December 14, 1807: Space Invader

At 6:30 a.m. on this day in 1807, residents from Vermont to Connecticut looked up at the sky and saw a red fireball. About two-thirds the size of a full Moon, it raced across the heavens, broke apart, and fell to earth in at least six areas of Weston (now Easton), Trumbull, and Fairfield, Connecticut. Whizzing sounds were heard close to the impact sites, and three sonic booms were heard as far as 40 miles away. The entire event took about 30 seconds.

Upon hearing the news a few days later, Yale professor Benjamin Silliman, accompanied by his colleague, professor James Kingsley, traveled to the impact area to talk to witnesses, examine impact sites, and collect specimens (including some that enterprising townsfolk were selling as souvenirs). Silliman confirmed that it had been a meteorite—the first officially recorded in the New World.

Meteorites, rocks that fell from space, were a concept slowly gaining acceptance in Europe, but their study was still a relatively new science. In an article in the Connecticut Herald published on December 29, Silliman and Kingsley described the Weston event. The news rapidly spread to other newspapers, and accounts were published in literary and philosophical journals. Later, Silliman performed a chemical analysis of the rocks and published a revised report. The findings were discussed by notable scientific organizations in Philadelphia, London, and Paris. Still, there were skeptics about the idea of meteorites, including U.S. president Thomas Jefferson, who was said to have remarked, “It is easier to believe that two Yankee professors could lie than to admit that stones could fall from heaven.”

Fun Fact: Silliman’s and Kingsley’s Weston meteorite fragments were the first cataloged items in the Yale meteorite collection, which is the oldest in the United States.

Today’s Holiday for Dec. 2: Advent


Christmas Lent, Little Lent,

St. Philip’s Fast, Winter Lent

The word “Advent” comes from the Latin word adventuswhich means “coming” or “arrival.” The Advent seasonserves as a period of spiritual preparation for the coming of Christmas. Advent calls Christians to reflect on both thebirth of Jesus and on the Second Coming of Christ (see also Jesus,Year of Birth). In Western Christianity Adventbegins on the Sunday closest to November 30, St. Andrew’s Day, and lasts till December 24, thereby extending over aperiod of 22 to 28 days. In the Orthodox Church Advent begins on November 15. The Roman Catholic, Orthodox,Anglican, and Lutheran traditions view Advent as the beginning of the Church year. The liturgical color for Advent ispurple, reflecting the repentant mood characteristic of early Church Advent observances. By contrast, many popularcustoms associated with this period joyfully anticipate the coming of Christmas.


In 490 A . D . Bishop Perpetuus of Tours, France, established a period of penance and preparation for Christmas in hisdiocese. He advocated fasting on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays for a forty-day period preceding Christmas.This fast period began on the day after Martinmas, November 11, thereby acquiring the name “St. Martin’s Lent” or“The Forty Days’ Fast of St. Martin.” The observation of a period of penance in preparation for Christmas graduallyspread throughout France, and on to Spain and Germany, though it may have been largely restricted to monasticcommunities. In Spain groups of Christians were already fasting in preparation for Epiphany. In the early years therewas little agreement regarding the dates and length of this pre-Christmas fast period. In some areas the fast began onNovember 11. In others, September 24, November 1, or December 1 might be the starting date. In 581 Mâcon orderedthe laity throughout France to observe the forty-day period of fasting. Two hundred years later the Advent fast wasadopted in England as well.

Advent was not observed in Rome until the sixth century. Pope Gregory I (590-604 A . D .) developed much of theRoman Advent liturgy and shortened the period of observance from six to four weeks. The joyous, festive spirit withwhich the Romans celebrated Advent clashed with the somber, penitential mood established in Gallic observances.For a number of centuries Advent celebrations throughout western Europe varied in tone, length, and manner ofobservance. Sometime after 1000 A . D . Rome accepted the practice of fasting during Advent, which in those timesmeant abstaining from amusements, travel for purposes of recreation, and marital relations, as well as certain foods.In addition, no weddings were permitted during fast periods.

By the thirteenth century the observance of Advent in western Europe had stabilized. It combined the Roman traditionof a four-week observance, the Gallic custom of fasting, and a liturgy that mingled the themes of penance and joy. Inrecent centuries the Roman Catholic Church reduced, and eventually eliminated, Advent fasting.

The Orthodox Church

The Orthodox churches of eastern Europe developed different traditions. Since the eighth century Orthodox believershave fasted in preparation for Christmas. Orthodox believers fast by eliminating meat, fish, dairy products, wine, andolive oil from their diets for a set period of time. A common Orthodox term for Advent is “Little Lent.” In the Greektradition, Advent is often called “Christmas Lent,” a period that lasts from November 15 until the eve of December 24and is observed with fasting, prayer, and almsgiving (see also Greece, Christmas in). The Orthodox period ofpreparation before Christmas may also be called “St. Philip’s Fast” because it begins the day after St. Philip’s Day.Armenian Orthodox believers fast for three weeks out of a seven-week Advent period, which runs from November 15till January 6. Orthodoxy does not maintain a special liturgy for this period (see also Armenia, Christmas in).

Folk Customs

The folk customs of Advent reflect the anticipation and joy that characterize the weeks preceding Christmas in manycountries. In many lands Nativity scenes are constructed and displayed. Advent may also be a favorite time of year toattend special Christmas concerts and performances. Many customs connected with the season feature the lighting ofAdvent candles. Indeed, the candle has become a symbol of the season. Some Christians fashion and display Jessetrees and Chrismon trees in observance of Advent. Others attend special church services, such as the AnglicanCeremony of Lessons and Carols. The Advent wreath keeps adults focused on the spiritual message of Advent. TheAdvent calendar offers children a toy to help them count the days until Christmas. Other children’s customs includewriting letters to the child Jesus or Santa Claus (see also Children’s Letters) and participating in the Hispanic folk playcalled Las Posadas, in which children and adults recreate the Holy Family’s search for a place to spend the night inBethlehem. Frauentragen, or “woman carrying,” is a German Advent custom which closely resembles Las Posadas.Children carry a picture or figurine representing the Virgin Mary to a neighborhood home. Once there, they sing orenact a brief scene from the Nativity story, say a prayer, and place the picture or figurine near the family crucifix. Thechildren return for the image the following evening and carry it to a new home. In this way they act out Mary andJoseph’s search for lodging in Bethlehem. On Christmas Eve the children carry Mary back to the church, where shetakes her place in the Nativity scene. Musical folk plays were once a popular Advent custom in Germany. Known asHerbergsuchen, or “search for the inn,” this folk drama also reenacted Mary and Joseph’s search for shelter inBethlehem. The play ended happily with the birth of the baby Jesus in a stable.

In Latin America and central Europe the nine days before Christmas take on a special character. In Latin Americamany people participate in a popular novena in honor of the Christ child. A novena is a series of special religiousservices or private devotions held on nine consecutive days. In Europe the nine days before Christmas weresometimes called the “Golden Nights,” as many of the religious observances and popular celebrations thatcharacterized the period occurred after dark.

Further Reading

Henderson, Helene, and Sue Ellen Thompson, eds. Holidays, Festivals, andCelebrations of the World Dictionary.Second edition. Detroit, Mich.: Omnigraphics, 1997. Metford, J. C. J. The Christian YearLondon, England: Thamesand Hudson, 1991. O’Shea, W. J. “Advent.” In New Catholic EncyclopediaVolume 1. New York: McGraw-Hill, 1967.Russ, Jennifer M. German Festivals and CustomsLondon, England: Oswald Wolff, 1982. Slim, Hugo. Feast ofFestivalsLondon, England: Marshall Pickering, 1996. Thompson, Sue Ellen, ed. Holiday SymbolsDetroit, Mich.:Omnigraphics, 1998. Weiser, Francis X. Handbook of Christian Feasts and CustomsNew York: Harcourt, Brace andCompany, 1952.

Web Site

The German Embassy in Washington, D.C., offers a page describing Advent customs in Germany:

Encyclopedia of Christmas and New Year’s Celebrations, 2nd ed. © Omnigraphics, Inc. 2003

This Day In History For Dec. 3: Barney Clark Receives World’s First Permanent Artificial Heart

Barney Clark Receives World’s First Permanent Artificial Heart

An artificial heart is a device that replaces the heart. Artificial hearts are typically used to bridge the time to heart transplantation, or to permanently replace the heart in case heart transplantation is impossible. Although other similar inventions preceded it from the late 1940s, the first artificial heart to be successfully implanted in a human was the Jarvik-7 in 1982, designed by a team including Willem Johan Kolff and Robert Jarvik.

An artificial heart is distinct from a ventricular assist device (VAD) designed to support a failing heart. It is also distinct from a cardiopulmonary bypass machine, which is an external device used to provide the functions of both the heart and lungs and are used only for a few hours at a time, most commonly during cardiac surgery.


A synthetic replacement for the heart remains a long-sought “holy grail” of modern medicine. The obvious benefit of a functional artificial heart would be to lower the need for heart transplants, because the demand for organs always greatly exceeds supply (rather necessary for transplant are normally unfit for transfer).

Although the heart is conceptually a pump, it embodies subtleties that defy straightforward emulation with synthetic materials and power supplies. Consequences of these issues include severe foreign-body rejection and external batteries that limit mobility. These complications limited the lifespan of early human recipients to hours or days.

Early development

The first artificial heart was made by the Soviet scientist Vladimir Demikhov in 1937. It was transplanted to a dog.

On July 2, 1952, 41-year-old Henry Opitek, suffering from shortness of breath, made medical history at Harper University Hospital at Wayne State University in Michigan. The Dodrill-GMR heart machine, considered to be the first operational mechanical heart, was successfully used while performing heart surgery.[1][2] Ongoing research was done on young male cows at Hershey Medical Center, Animal Research Facility in Hershey, PA during the 1970’s.

Forest Dewey Dodrill, working closely with Matthew Dudley, used the machine in 1952 to bypass Henry Opitek’s left ventricle for 50 minutes while he opened the patient’s left atrium and worked to repair the mitral valve. In Dodrill’s post-operative report, he notes, “To our knowledge, this is the first instance of survival of a patient when a mechanicaly heart mechanism was used to take over the complete body function of maintaining the blood supply of the body while the heart was open and operated on.”[3]

A heart–lung machine was first used in 1953 during a successful open heart surgery. John Heysham Gibbon, the inventor of the machine, performed the operation and developed the heart–lung substitute himself.

Following these advances, scientific interest for the development of a solution for heart disease developed in numerous research groups worldwide.

Early designs of total artificial hearts

In 1949, a precursor to the modern artificial heart pump was built by doctors William Sewell and William Glenn of the Yale School of Medicine using an Erector Set, assorted odds and ends, and dime-store toys. The external pump successfully bypassed the heart of a dog for more than an hour.[4]

Paul Winchell invented an artificial heart with the assistance of Henry Heimlich (the inventor of the Heimlich maneuver) and held the first patent for such a device. The University of Utah developed a similar apparatus around the same time, but when they tried to patent it, Winchell’s heart was cited as prior art. The university requested that Winchell donate the heart to the University of Utah, which he did. There is some debate as to how much of Winchell’s design Robert Jarvik used in creating Jarvik’s artificial heart. Heimlich states, “I saw the heart, I saw the patent and I saw the letters. The basic principle used in Winchell’s heart and Jarvik’s heart is exactly the same.[5]” Jarvik denies that any of Winchell’s design elements were incorporated into the device he fabricated for humans which was successfully implanted into Barney Clark in 1982.

On December 12, 1957, Willem Johan Kolff, the world’s most prolific inventor of artificial organs, implanted an artificial heart into a dog at Cleveland Clinic. The dog lived for 90 minutes.

In 1958, Domingo Liotta initiated the studies of TAH replacement at Lyon, France, and in 1959–60 at the National University of Córdoba, Argentina. He presented his work at the meeting of the American Society for Artificial Internal Organs held in Atlantic City in March 1961. At that meeting, Liotta described the implantation of three types of orthotopic (inside the pericardial sac) TAHs in dogs, each of which used a different source of external energy: an implantable electric motor, an implantable rotating pump with an external electric motor, and a pneumatic pump.[6][7]

In 1964, the National Institutes of Health started the Artificial Heart Program, with the goal of putting a man-made heart into a human by the end of the decade.[8] The purpose of the program was to develop an implantable artificial heart, including the power source, to replace a failing heart.[9]

In February 1966, Adrian Kantrowitz rose to international prominence when he performed the world’s first permanent implantation of a partial mechanical heart (left ventricular assist device) at Maimonides Medical Center.[10]

In 1967, Kolff left Cleveland Clinic to start the Division of Artificial Organs at the University of Utah and pursue his work on the artificial heart.

  1. In 1973, a calf named Tony survived for 30 days on an early Kolff heart.
  2. In 1975, a bull named Burk survived 90 days on the artificial heart.
  3. In 1976, a calf named Abebe lived for 184 days on the Jarvik 5 artificial heart.
  4. In 1981, a calf named Alfred Lord Tennyson lived for 268 days on the Jarvik 5.

Over the years, more than 200 physicians, engineers, students and faculty developed, tested and improved Kolff’s artificial heart. To help manage his many endeavors, Kolff assigned project managers. Each project was named after its manager. Graduate student Robert Jarvik was the project manager for the artificial heart, which was subsequently renamed the Jarvik 7.

In 1981, William DeVries submitted a request to the FDA for permission to implant the Jarvik 7 into a human being. On December 2, 1982, Kolff implanted the Jarvik 7 artificial heart into Barney Clark, a dentist from Seattle who was suffering from severe congestive heart failure. Clark lived for 112 days tethered to an external pneumatic compressor, a device weighing some 400 pounds (180 kg), but during that time he suffered prolonged periods of confusion and a number of instances of bleeding, and asked several times to be allowed to die.[11]

First clinical implantation of a total artificial heart[edit]

On April 4, 1969, Domingo Liotta and Denton A. Cooley replaced a dying man’s heart with a mechanical heart inside the chest at The Texas Heart Institute in Houston as a bridge for a transplant. The man woke up and began to recover. After 64 hours, the pneumatic-powered artificial heart was removed and replaced by a donor heart. However thirty-two hours after transplantation, the man died of what was later proved to be an acute pulmonary infection, extended to both lungs, caused by fungi, most likely caused by an immunosuppressive drug complication.[12]

The original prototype of Liotta-Cooley artificial heart used in this historic operation is prominently displayed in the Smithsonian Institution’s National Museum of American History “Treasures of American History” exhibit in Washington, D.C.[13]

First clinical applications of a permanent pneumatic total artificial heart[edit]

The first clinical use of an artificial heart designed for permanent implantation rather than a bridge to transplant occurred in 1982 at the University of Utah. Artificial kidney pioneer Willem Johan Kolff started the Utah artificial organs program in 1967.[14] There, physician-engineer Clifford Kwan-Gett invented two components of an integrated pneumatic artificial heart system: a ventricle with hemispherical diaphragms that did not crush red blood cells (a problem with previous artificial hearts) and an external heart driver that inherently regulated blood flow without needing complex control systems.[15] Independently, Paul Winchell designed and patented a similarly shaped ventricle and donated the patent to the Utah program.[16] Throughout the 1970s and early 1980s, veterinarian Donald Olsen led a series of calf experiments that refined the artificial heart and its surgical care. During that time, as a student at the University of Utah, Robert Jarvik combined several modifications: an ovoid shape to fit inside the human chest, a more blood-compatible polyurethane developed by biomedical engineer Donald Lyman, and a fabrication method by Kwan-Gett that made the inside of the ventricles smooth and seamless to reduce dangerous stroke-causing blood clots.[17] On December 2, 1982, William DeVries implanted the artificial heart into retired dentist Barney Bailey Clark (born January 21, 1921), who survived 112 days with the device, dying on March 23, 1983. Bill Schroeder became the second recipient and lived for a record 620 days.

Contrary to popular belief and erroneous articles in several periodicals, the Jarvik heart was not banned for permanent use. Today, the modern version of the Jarvik 7 is known as the SynCardia temporary Total Artificial Heart. It has been implanted in more than 1,350 people as a bridge to transplantation.

In the mid-1980s, artificial hearts were powered by dishwasher-sized pneumatic power sources whose lineage went back to Alfa Laval milking machines. Moreover, two sizable catheters had to cross the body wall to carry the pneumatic pulses to the implanted heart, greatly increasing the risk of infection. To speed development of a new generation of technologies, the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute opened a competition for implantable electrically powered artificial hearts. Three groups received funding: Cleveland Clinic in Cleveland, Ohio; the College of Medicine of Pennsylvania State University (Penn State Hershey Medical Center) in Hershey, Pennsylvania; and AbioMed, Inc. of Danvers, Massachusetts. Despite considerable progress, the Cleveland program was discontinued after the first five years.

Polymeric trileaflet valves ensure unidirectional blood flow with a low pressure gradient and good longevity. State-of-the-art transcutaneous energy transfer eliminates the need for electric wires crossing the chest wall.

First clinical application of an intrathoracic pump

On July 19, 1963, E. Stanley Crawford and Domingo Liotta implanted the first clinical Left Ventricular Assist Device (LVAD) at The Methodist Hospital in Houston, Texas, in a patient who had a cardiac arrest after surgery. The patient survived for four days under mechanical support but did not recover from the complications of the cardiac arrest; finally, the pump was discontinued, and the patient died.

First clinical application of a paracorporeal pump

On April 21, 1966, Michael DeBakey and Liotta implanted the first clinical LVAD in a paracorporeal position (where the external pump rests at the side of the patient) at The Methodist Hospital in Houston, in a patient experiencing cardiogenic shock after heart surgery. The patient developed neurological and pulmonary complications and died after few days of LVAD mechanical support. In October 1966, DeBakey and Liotta implanted the paracorporeal Liotta-DeBakey LVAD in a new patient who recovered well and was discharged from the hospital after 10 days of mechanical support, thus constituting the first successful use of an LVAD for postcardiotomy shock.

First VAD patient with FDA approved hospital discharge

In 1990 Brian Williams was discharged from the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC), becoming the first VAD patient to be discharged with Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval.[19] The patient was supported in part by bioengineers from the University of Pittsburgh’s McGowan Institute.[19][20]

Total artificial heart prototypes

Total artificial heart pump

The Army artificial heart pump was a compact, air-powered unit developed by Dr. Kenneth Woodward at Harry Diamond Laboratories in the early to mid-1960s.[21][22] The Army’s heart pump was partially made of Lucite, also called Plexiglass, and consisted of two valves, a chamber, and a suction flapper.[21] The pump operated without any moving parts under the principle of fluid amplification – providing a pulsating air pressure source resembling a heartbeat.[22] Harry Diamond Laboratories was later merged with Army Research Laboratory in 1992.[23]


Since 1991, the Foundation for Cardiac Surgery Development (FRK) in Zabrze, Poland has been working on developing an artificial heart. Nowadays, the Polish system for heart support POLCAS consists of the artificial ventricle POLVAD-MEV and the three controllers POLPDU-401, POLPDU-402 and POLPDU-501. Presented devices are designed to handle only one patient. The control units of the 401 and 402 series may be used only in hospital due to its big size, method of control and type of power supply. The control[24] unit of 501 series is the latest product of FRK. Due to its much smaller size and weight, it is significantly more mobile solution. For this reason, it can be also used during supervised treatment conducted outside the hospital.


In June 1996, a 46-year-old man received a total artificial heart implantation done by Jeng Wei at Cheng-Hsin General Hospital[25] in the Republic of China (Taiwan). This technologically advanced pneumatic Phoenix-7 Total Artificial Heart was manufactured by a Taiwanese dentist Kelvin K. Cheng, a Chinese physician T. M. Kao and colleagues at the Taiwan TAH Research Center in Tainan, Republic of China (Taiwan). With this experimental artificial heart, the patient’s BP was maintained at 90-100/40-55 mmHg and cardiac output at 4.2–5.8 L/min.[26] The patient then received the world’s first successful combined heart and kidney transplantation after bridging with a total artificial heart.[27]

Abiomed AbioCor

The first AbioCor to be surgically implanted in a patient was on July 3, 2001. [28] The AbioCor is made of titanium and plastic with a weight of 0,9 kg (two pounds), and its internal battery can be recharged with a transduction device that sends power through the skin.[28] The internal battery lasts for half an hour, and a wearable external battery pack lasts for four hours.[29] The FDA announced on September 5, 2006, that the AbioCor could be implanted for humanitarian uses after the device had been tested on 15 patients.[30] It is intended for critically ill patients who cannot receive a heart transplant.[30] Some limitations of the current AbioCor are that its size makes it suitable for less than 50% of the female population and only about 50% of the male population, and its useful life is only 1–2 years.[31]


SynCardia is a company based in Tucson, Arizona which currently has two separate models available. It is available in a 70cc and 50cc size. The 70 cc is used for biventricular heart failure in adult men, while the 50cc is for children and women.[32] As good results with the TAH as a bridge to heart transplant accumulated, a trial of the CardioWest TAH (developed from the Jarvik 7 and now marketed as the Syncardia TAH) was initiated in 1993 and completed in 2002.[33] As of 2014, more than 1,250 patients have received SynCardia artificial hearts.[34][35][34] The device requires the use of the Companion 2 hospital driver or the Freedom portable driver to power the heart with pulses of air. The drivers also monitor blood flow for each ventricle.[36]


Another U.S. team has a prototype called the 2005 MagScrew Total Artificial Heart. Teams in Japan and South Korea are also racing to produce similar devices.[37][38][39][40]

Cleveland Heart

The Cleveland Heart is a continuous-flow total artificial heart (CFTAH)[citation needed]

Abiomed AbioCor II

By combining its valved ventricles with the control technology and roller screw developed at Penn State, AbioMed has designed a smaller, more stable heart, the AbioCor II. This pump, which should be implantable in most men and 50% of women with a life span of up to five years,[31] had animal trials in 2005, and the company hoped to get FDA approval for human use in 2008.[41]

Carmat bioprosthetic heart

On October 27, 2008, French professor and leading heart transplant specialist Alain F. Carpentier announced that a fully implantable artificial heart would be ready for clinical trial by 2011 and for alternative transplant in 2013. It was developed and would be manufactured by him, biomedical firm CARMAT SA,[42] and venture capital firm Truffle Capital. The prototype used embedded electronic sensors and was made from chemically treated animal tissues, called “biomaterials”, or a “pseudo-skin” of biosynthetic, microporous materials.[43]

According to a press-release by Carmat dated December 20, 2013, the first implantation of its artificial heart in a 75-year-old patient was performed on December 18, 2013 by the Georges Pompidou European Hospital team in Paris (France).[44] The patient died 75 days after the operation.[45]

In Carmat’s design, two chambers are each divided by a membrane that holds hydraulic fluid on one side. A motorized pump moves hydraulic fluid in and out of the chambers, and that fluid causes the membrane to move; blood flows through the other side of each membrane. The blood-facing side of the membrane is made of tissue obtained from a sac that surrounds a cow’s heart, to make the device more biocompatible. The Carmat device also uses valves made from cow heart tissue and has sensors to detect increased pressure within the device. That information is sent to an internal control system that can adjust the flow rate in response to increased demand, such as when a patient is exercising.[46] This distinguishes it from previous designs that maintain a constant flow rate.

The Carmat device, unlike previous designs, is meant to be used in cases of terminal heart failure, instead of being used as a bridge device while the patient awaits a transplant.[47] At 900 grams it weighs nearly three times the typical heart and is targeted primarily towards obese men. It also requires the patient to carry around an additional Li-Ion battery. The projected lifetime of the artificial heart is around 5 years (230 million beats).[48]


On 12 March 2011, an experimental artificial heart was implanted in 55-year-old Craig Lewis at The Texas Heart Institute in Houston by Drs. O. H. Frazier and William Cohn. The device is a combination of two modified HeartMate II pumps that is currently undergoing bovine trials.[49]

Frazier and Cohn are on the board of the BiVACOR company that develops an artificial heart.[50][51] BiVACOR has been tested as a replacement for a heart in a sheep.[52][53]

So far, only one person has benefited from Frazier and Cohn’s artificial heart. Craig Lewis was suffering from amyloidosis in 2011 when his heart gave out and doctors pronounced that he had only 12 to 24 hours to live. After obtaining permission from his family, Frazier and Cohn replaced his heart with their device. Lewis survived for another 5 weeks after the operation; he eventually succumbed to liver and kidney failure due to his amyloidosis, after which his family asked that his artificial heart be unplugged.[54]

Soft Artificial Heart

On 10 July 2017, Cohrs and colleagues presented a new concept of a soft total artificial heart in the Journal of Artificial Organs.[55] The heart was developed in the Functionals Materials Laboratory at ETH Zurich.[56] The soft artificial heart (SAH) was created from silicone with the help of 3D printing technology. The SAH is a silicone monoblock. It weighs 390g, has a volume of 679 cm^3 and is operated through pressurized air. “Our goal is to develop an artificial heart that is roughly the same size as the patient’s own one and which imitates the human heart as closely as possible in form and function” says Cohrs in an interview.[57] The SAH fundamentally moves and works like a real heart but currently only beats for 3000 beats.[58]


A centrifugal pump[59][60] or an axial-flow pump[61][62] can be used as an artificial heart, resulting in the patient being alive without a pulse.

A centrifugal artificial heart which alternately pumps the pulmonary circulation and the systemic circulation, causing a pulse, has been described.[63]

Researchers have constructed a heart out of foam. The heart is made out of flexible silicone and works with an external pump to push air and fluids through the heart. It currently cannot be implanted into humans, but it is a promising start for artificial hearts.[64]

Hybrid assistive devices

Patients who have some remaining heart function but who can no longer live normally may be candidates for ventricular assist devices (VAD), which do not replace the human heart but complement it by taking up much of the function.

The first Left Ventricular Assist Device (LVAD) system was created by Domingo Liotta at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston in 1962.[65]

Another VAD, the Kantrowitz CardioVad, designed by Adrian Kantrowitz boosts the native heart by taking up over 50% of its function.[66] Additionally, the VAD can help patients on the wait list for a heart transplant. In a young person, this device could delay the need for a transplant by 10–15 years, or even allow the heart to recover, in which case the VAD can be removed.[66] The artificial heart is powered by a battery that needs to be changed several times while still working.

The first heart assist device was approved by the FDA in 1994, and two more received approval in 1998.[67] While the original assist devices emulated the pulsating heart, newer versions, such as the Heartmate II,[68] developed by The Texas Heart Institute of Houston, provide continuous flow. These pumps (which may be centrifugal or axial flow) are smaller and potentially more durable and last longer than the current generation of total heart replacement pumps. Another major advantage of a VAD is that the patient keeps the natural heart, which may still function for temporary back-up support if the mechanical pump were to stop. This may provide enough support to keep the patient alive until a solution to the problem is implemented.

In August 2006, an artificial heart was implanted into a 15-year-old girl at the Stollery Children’s Hospital in Edmonton, Alberta. It was intended to act as a temporary fixture until a donor heart could be found. Instead, the artificial heart (called a Berlin Heart) allowed for natural processes to occur and her heart healed on its own. After 146 days, the Berlin Heart was removed, and the girl’s heart functioned properly on its own.[69] On December 16, 2011 the Berlin Heart gained U.S. FDA approval. The device has since been successfully implanted in several children including a 4-year-old Honduran girl at Children’s Hospital Boston.[70]

Several continuous-flow ventricular assist devices have been approved for use in the European Union, and, as of August 2007, were undergoing clinical trials for FDA approval.

In 2012, a study published in the New England Journal of Medicine compared the Berlin Heart to extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO) and concluded that “a ventricular assist device available in several sizes for use in children as a bridge to heart transplantation [such as the Berlin Heart] was associated with a significantly higher rate of survival as compared with ECMO.”[71] The study’s primary author, Charles D. Fraser, Jr., surgeon in chief at Texas Children’s Hospital, explained: “With the Berlin Heart, we have a more effective therapy to offer patients earlier in the management of their heart failure. When we sit with parents, we have real data to offer so they can make an informed decision. This is a giant step forward.” [72]

Suffering from end-stage heart failure, former Vice President Dick Cheney underwent a procedure in July 2010 to have a VAD implanted at INOVA Fairfax Hospital, in Fairfax Virginia. In 2012, he received a heart transplant at age 71 after 20 months on a waiting list.


General references

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Daily Inspiration for Dec. 3: Magical Moments



Magical Moments


The truly noteworthy events in our lives are often the least momentous, yet the most wonderful.

Most of us are adept at seeing the big picture. Caught up in the hectic pace of modern life, we feel compelled to immediately distinguish what is important from what is not. The assessment is an easy one to make when we are mired in the daily grind–everything relating to success seems significant and everything else seems comparatively trivial. But what is most precious in this life cannot be measured in affluence or influence. The truly noteworthy events in our lives are often the least momentous yet the most wonderful. They are the magical moments in which we are simply awestruck by the wonderment of life. Though our perception of magical moments may be blocked by worldly concerns, our days are filled with such moments. To experience them fully, we need only open ourselves to their existence.

Magical moments are not measured by the composition of an experience but rather by our reaction to it. Since such moments come and go quickly, they should be consciously savored and noted. They stick with us only when we recognize the impact they have had on our mood, our day, and our lives. In such instances, we may find we are suddenly and blissfully aware that we have evolved or that those around us have changed in some positive way. We may stand in awe at the beauty of a familiar object or derive great pleasure from an everyday activity. Or we may witness incidents of supreme kindness and compassion that do not directly involve us yet touch our hearts intensely. Nature is a constant source of magical moments. When we cherish such occurrences, we condition ourselves to take note of them when they happen and appreciate the value they add to our lives.

An idea for increasing your awareness of the magical moments in your life is to record all such happenings in a journal kept for that purpose. As these moments are personal, your journal can be a documentation of small joys or a testimony of grand revelations. You may begin to notice that there is more magic in your life than you initially imagined. In striving to make the most of each of these magical moments, you grant yourself permission to experience new levels of joy, surprise, tenderness, and personal fulfillment.


The Daily OM

Love Songs for Every Sign

Love Songs for Every Sign

Listen to the sweet sounds of romance

Love, especially the romantic kind, is one of the most wonderful and exciting parts of being human — as well as one of the most difficult. It certainly does “take two” — the trick is to get and keep those two on the same page. That’s why so many different types of love songs have been written, about everything from new love to forever love to unrequited love. The list of love songs is as endless as the feelings love inspires. Here’s a peek at the romantic tunes each zodiac sign likes to hear, no matter what they’re feeling.

Aries (March 21 – April 19)

This fiery sign doesn’t go for your basic Air Supply type stuff — and don’t ever, ever play Barry for them (Manilow, that is … Barry White will do fine, especially with champagne and chocolates). In particular, you Rams will like love songs that have a rock and roll beat to them. Something that reflects your Fire element — like Light My Fire by The Doors, or Fire on High by ELO. Oh, and if you’re angry? Turn right to What Doesn’t Kill You by Kelly Clarkson or I Will Survive by Gloria Gaynor.


Taurus (April 20 – May 20)

Taurus natives play for keeps in all departments, and when it comes to romantic love, the person you love belongs to you (in your mind, at least!). You, Taurus, are the personal property of Venus, the goddess of love, so the perks of being your companion are excellent. There are two romantic songs that immediately spring to mind when it comes to the type of love Taurus feels: Always and Forever by Luther Vandross, and Let’s Stay Together by Al Green.


Gemini (May 21 – June 20)

OK, so everything you’ve ever read about your sign says that you’re fickle. Well, that’s not exactly true. You can be as faithful and reliable as a Taurus, provided you’re amused. And that’s not as tough as it sounds. You’re tough, but you’re easy, too, as long as you have a mental equal who understands your need to banter and play. So let’s start with Don’t Let Me Be Misunderstood (Animals) for obvious reasons, and to dispel all those rumors about that fickleness, how about Unforgettable (Nat King Cole), a tribute to the one ultra-special person they truly must be to have landed you!


Cancer (June 21 – July 22)

Your sign is famous for many things, but what all your traits have in common is an incomparable talent for expressing love and affection. Even romantically, you do it through nurturing, protecting, and letting the lucky object of your attention know, in many ways, that you cherish them more than anyone or anything else on the planet. Here are two songs that really work for you: Love Me Tender by none other than Elvis Presley, and Like I’m Gonna Lose You by Meghan Trainor.


Leo (July 23 – Aug. 22)

Every sign has its own way of loving, and their own way of treating their loved one. But you, Leo, think of love the same way you think of everything else: as a magnificent, noble, elegant gift — the best and truest thing any two people can exchange. For that reason, there are two songs that suit your particular style of loving just perfectly: Just the Way You Are by Bruno Mars, and Sunshine of Your Love by Cream, which even connects with the warmth of your ruling planet, the Sun.


Virgo (Aug. 23 – Sept. 22)

You approach love the same way you approach everything else, Virgo, and it’s all reflected beautifully by What’s Simple is True (Jewel). In many ways, it’s an ode to the way you live your life: by the basics. You work very hard to keep your life drama-free. No scenes, no crises, and as few arguments as possible. You’re also famous for being quite picky, and in the department of romance, that’s something other people really should learn. Once you do find your soul mate, there’s only one song you’d dedicate to them: Perfect by Ed Sheeran.


Libra (Sept. 23 – Oct. 22)

In all things romantic, your objective remains the same, Libra: to find the right person, entice them to get to know you better, and then — if and when things work out — to romance them better than anyone else. The end goal is to find and keep your soulmate. The songs that come to mind for you are Your Song by Elton John, and I Will Always Love You by Dolly Parton (and many others), a classic that’s inspired more than one proposal.


Scorpio (Oct. 23 – Nov. 21)

Say the word “sexy” to any group of astrologers, and their immediate, unanimous response will be “Scorpio.” Obviously, any love song you identify with absolutely must have sexy words and a sexy beat. No sweet stuff here — just a potent, throbbing message, and lyrics that don’t play games. In that department, there are two songs that immediately come to mind: Skin by Rihanna, and Sexual Healing by Marvin Gaye. Play those for a new flame. If they appreciate the message, great. If they play them for you first, pick up your jaw discreetly and start thinking about two-bedroom apartments.


Sagittarius (Nov. 22 – Dec. 21)

You’re a free-wheeling kind of soul, Sagittarius. You always have been and you always will be. For that reason, there are very few love songs that appeal to you. They’ve got to be the kind that reflect: 1) your love of freedom and 2) your secret wish to have the absolutely perfect travel partner on your arm as you patrol the planet looking for the next adventure. So, I’m Free by The Rolling Stones is perfect for category 1, and You and Me by Dave Matthews Band is tailor-made for number 2.


Capricorn (Dec. 22 – Jan. 19)

Your sign’s symbol is the steady Mountain Goat, who easily navigates even the most perilous ridge, showing its penchant for living life on the edge — but safely. So while you take your chances, especially with romance, they’re planned and deliberate. You wait until it’s safe, then go all out to scale that mountain. For all those reasons, Ain’t No Mountain High Enough by Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terell is a classic that suits you, your inner desires, and your ambition to succeed once you’ve set any goal.


Aquarius (Jan. 20 – Feb. 18)

I’m Real by Jennifer Lopez — to be honest, it’s the best song ever written about your sign, and you should hand-deliver it to anyone you’re initially drawn to. The main reason is one line: “What you get is what you see.” You, Aquarius, are the most open, honest, and genuine sign out there. Another great song for your sign, I’m Yours by Jason Mraz, should also be hand-delivered, but not until you’re sure that he or she is the real deal. You know how you get with the independence thing, so until you are sure your love will be returned and your love of freedom will be respected, song number two will have to wait.


Pisces (Feb. 19 – March 20)

Water signs are the most sympathetic, understanding, and warm-hearted of all — and if anyone knows how to express love (sometimes to a fault) it’s definitely you, Pisces. That makes choosing love songs a tough job — mostly because no matter what feeling the song describes, you’ve been there. Dozens appeal to your tender heart, especially when you’re madly, passionately in love, and absolutely spellbound by your beloved. Take, for example, I Don’t Want to Miss a Thing by Aerosmith. Dream Weaver by Gary Wright reflects your spiritual side and your love of all things magical. is Part of the Daily Insight Group ©2018

Get A Jump On Tomorrow, Your Horoscopes for Monday, Dec. 3

Get A Jump On Tomorrow…..

Your Horoscopes for Monday, Dec. 3

Jennifer Angel

What will 2019 bring for you? Book a year ahead psychic astrology reading with Jennifer

Moon and Venus connection in Scorpio unveils your emotions.

Aries MARCH 21-APRIL 19
As the changeable Moon connects with Venus, somebody could help resolve a sensitive financial situation. Be open to discussing different options and a recent problem could be settled or, if not, at least you may feel differently about it. Often, things happen when the time is right.

Taurus APRIL 20-MAY 20
An awkward situation can be ignored for only so long; eventually, you’ll have to deal with it. And with the Moon and Venus connecting, the combined energy can open the door to have a sensitive discussion to set things right. Schedule a time and plan what to say.

Gemini MAY 21-JUNE 20
While others may be concentrating on the holidays, this week you might be making plans to move ahead at work. Keep your emotions in check; remember, business is business and, no matter how well you know someone, maintain a professional manner.

Cancer JUNE 21-JULY 22
Stand by for love. The Moon and Venus connect and can create sparks of love magic. Make time for love, and being in the right place doesn’t hurt, either. Romance and passion are very important in a relationship, but friendship keeps it together for the long haul.

Leo JULY 23-AUG. 22
Right now, your focus in on money and family affairs, or a situation at home. As the Moon and Venus connect, the energy will help you connect with the right people to get things set in place. You want to look after others, but be careful it is not at the cost of looking out for yourself.

Virgo AUG. 23-SEPT. 22
With so much to do this month you could feel overwhelmed. But nobody says everything has to be finished right away, or even at all. Sometimes, you take it upon yourself to try to be there for too many people. Take care of your own responsibilities first, and you’ll feel re-energized.

Libra SEPT. 23-OCT. 22
A financial opportunity could come along now, but you have to be ready and willing to accept it. Sometimes, a small shift in your outlook can make a big difference. If you want to change your life, you have to realize what you have to do differently.

Scorpio OCT. 23-NOV. 21
Avoid getting involved in other people’s drama. Maybe they only want to get things off their chest by venting, but you have a lot going on in your own life just now. The Moon and Venus interact in your sign, and you may have some sensitive issues of your own to deal with.

Sagittarius NOV. 22-DEC. 21
In a perfect world, everyone would be as generous and optimistic as you, but that’s not possible. There is no room for secrets or game-playing in your life, and if you tune into your intuition, you will learn who is on your side and who has a hidden agenda.

Capricorn DEC. 22-JAN. 19
Your attention is centered on both social activities and business, and as usual, the better organized you can become, the more you can accomplish. But with all the planned action, don’t neglect your well-being. Stick to your fitness regime; your body will thank you.

Aquarius JAN. 20-FEB. 18
If things are not going the way you planned, don’t stress, the week has only just begun, and a lot more can happen. Someone, who recognizes your talents at work, can step forward and be your promoter. A detour in your plans could actually work out to be better. Don’t get in your own way!

Pisces FEB. 19-MARCH 20
If you see an opportunity at work, don’t wait; step forward and show your attributes. This is not the time to be shy. When you know you’re right for the job, it’s up to you to let those in power see it, and the Moon Venus connection will help you make the right introductions.

Where You Born On December 2?

happy birthday, passionpussycat ♥
Happy Birthday!

Let’s hear it for the zodiac’s adventurous Archer

No matter how old you are, there will always be a bit of the little kid in you. This sense of wonder and joy will keep you happy all your life.

If you were born on December 2, you know what’s best! There’s an air of class and poise around you, and when it comes to manners, no one can beat you! You’re a bit of a perfectionist and set the bar very high for yourself and those around you. While this way of life will get you very far and earn you much respect, be careful not to scare your friends and family away. They may have a hard time living up to your standards. If you can keep in mind that humans are, well, human, then you’ll live a more relaxed and fulfilled life.

At your best: Dynamic, polite, determined
At your worst: Judgmental, intense, rude

More About Scorpio

Uh oh … did we let the cat out of the bag? Scorpio, we know that you treasure your privacy and enjoy being mysterious, but really — can you at least reveal that it’s your birthday? You’ve got so many incredible qualities to celebrate and the people who love you truly want to honor you on this special day.

The Calm Before The Storm

Let’s take, for example, your incredible sense of calm and razor sharp ability to take care of those crisis-filled moments without even breaking a sweat. No other sign is as good in a traumatic situation as you are. In fact, the other, more easily frazzled souls out there tend to count on you to get them through life’s most tricky terrain. You’ve also got a penetrating ability to see right into the heart of anyone and instantly understand what makes them tick. A natural born psychologist, people may lean on you for emotional support — especially in times of catastrophe. If there’s anything you’re not, it’s superficial.

These qualities might, however, get in the way of anyone who tries to plan your surprise birthday bash. Why? Because you’re more likely than others to intuitively pick up on the unspoken vibes around you. In fact, you are known as one of the most psychic signs of the zodiac! Since few people have an ability to pull the wool over your eyes, Scorpio, you may have a tendency towards suspicion. Remember that an offensive approach to relationships will only lead to you attracting control and manipulation your way. When you go deep and surrender to trusting others … well that’s when your most amazing, healing energy shines. is Part of the Daily Insight Group © 2018