In this medical video learn how doctors from the Arizona Heart Center are rebuilding the hearts and giving patients their lives back.
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Jennifer Matthews: Every 29 seconds, someone in America has a heart attack. Every minute, someone will die from one. Standard treatments include medications, machines to help the heart pump more blood, and heart transplants. Nabil Dib: For every 20,000 patients needed heart transplant, we only have 2,000 donors available. Jennifer Matthews: Dr. Nabil Dib may find a way around the lack of available organs by re-growing a patient's own heart muscle. In a first-of-its-kind study, doctors have taken muscle cells from a patient's leg, grown them in the lab, and injected the new cells into the heart. Nabil Dib: The transplanted cells diffuse together and they make a cell very similar to the heart muscles. Jennifer Matthews: The procedure improved the amount of blood pumped with each beat. In patients who received the new cells, it increased by 58%. As a dentist Samuel Cohen keeps up on medical research. After more than 20 years with heart disease, he was one of the first to have the procedure. Samuel Cohen: Physically, I don't have any awareness or any restrictions put on me because of my heart anymore. Jennifer Matthews: Sam says, he has never felt better, but he is focused on more than his heart these days. Samuel Cohen: I have two children that are ten and nine years of age, and I would love to be there when they graduate from college. Jennifer Matthews: This is Jennifer Matthews reporting.