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Health

Man who had artificial heart in backpack gets real one

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GABRIELA CAMEROTTI / FLIKR
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ANN ARBOR, Mich. (AP) - A Washtenaw County man has a real heart - after 555 days without one.

Stan Larkin received a heart transplant on May 9 at University of Michigan hospital and soon plans to return home to Ypsilanti.

Larkin's story is remarkable. Before the transplant, the 25-year-old carried a backpack with an artificial heart that pumped blood. The Ann Arbor News  says he was diagnosed with a disease that causes irregular heartbeats and can lead to sudden death.

A brother, Domonique Larkin, also needed a heart transplant.

The chief of transplant surgery, Dr. John Magee, says new organs give people "their entire lives back." Stan Larkin says he wants to play with his kids and celebrate a daughter's birthday at an amusement park.

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