By A. Nathoo
This e-book examines the connection among drugs and the media in Sixties Britain, whilst the 1st wave of middle transplants have been as a lot media as scientific occasions and marked a decisive interval in post-war heritage. Public belief of their medical professionals used to be considerably undermined, and drugs used to be held publicly to account as by no means ahead of.
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Additional resources for Hearts Exposed: Transplants and the Media in 1960s Britain (Science, Technology and Medicine in Modern History)
122 Although medical histories written by practitioners claim that in popular culture the concept of cardiac transplantation is grounded in mythology and language, the actuality was unfamiliar to the public until researchers started achieving positive surgical results on animals. As the media reported on various scientiﬁc and medical ‘breakthroughs’, including open-heart surgery, kidney transplantation and a partial artiﬁcial heart, the possibility of human heart transplantation started to be mentioned alongside these surgical realities.
Concerns were again raised about the ultimate damage to the reputation of the hospital, and that the long-term implications had not been adequately considered: ‘I cannot help feeling that they have been shelved in the interests of “getting there ﬁrst” ’. The longest animal transplant survival time had been only nine hours, far worse than Shumway’s results. No papers had been published or records kept of the experiments. All factors considered, Keith Ross asserted that carrying out the procedure at that time would degrade it ‘to the status of a press stunt’ and as such ‘is nauseating’.
106 The ﬁrst statement released to the press did not specify that a chimpanzee’s heart had been used and so a revised statement was issued by the Centre to include this point. Hardy speculated that the transplantation of a chimpanzee heart was likely to arouse more public controversy than the transplantation of a human heart, but the media quickly lost interest and the news had little impact. Reﬂecting on this point in 1969, the surgeon-historian Robert G. Richardson suggested, with hindsight: The reason why this failed to create an upheaval in the outside world is simple and signiﬁcant: the donor heart came from a chimpanzee, not from another human being.