The human heart is not just an organ. We regard it as the source of life, the seat of the deepest desires of a person, the foundation of his/ her character and behaviour towards fellow humans. For millennia, poets have romanticised the heart, giving it an aura of mystery and reverence.
Read along to know 10 incredible facts about the heart:
If the heart is the last major organ to stop working, it is also the first to develop – starting to beat approximately three weeks into fetal life, even before there is blood to pump.
From birth until death, the heart beats nearly three billion times.
Each heartbeat generates enough force to circulate blood through around 100,000 miles of vessels.
The heart can continue to beat for days, even weeks after an animal has died.
The amount of blood that passes through an average adult heart in a week can fill a backyard swimming pool.
Cardiovascular disease claims 18 million lives – nearly one-third of all deaths- across the globe each year.
Heartbreak, romantic break-ups, emotional setbacks, work-related stress are big risk factors for cardiac diseases.
William Harvey, an English Physician in the 17th century is the first person to discover that heart circulates blood to the organs of the body.
The first open-heart surgery was done by Dr Daniel Hale Williams in Chicago on a young man named James Cornish. The patient was a victim of a stab wound.
Heart Lung machine, a device that temporarily performs the functions of the heart and lungs during heart surgery, is one of the most important innovations in cardiology. This is because it gives enough time to physicians to correct heart defects without disturbing the patient’s blood circulation and thus preventing organ damage.
A note on Heart: A history by Sandeep Jauhar
The book Heart – A History by Sandeep Jauhar transports readers right to the surgical table and lets them have a peek at the incredible moments of cardiac advancements. These excruciating experiences have transformed lives with hope, survival and most importantly; a healthy beating heart.
Disclaimer: The details in this story were shared with the writer by Penguin Random House.