Mending Broken Hearts: Innovation Inside the Body

Artificial Heart Valves

The history of medical advancement in America has been one of trial and risk. Artificial heart valves were the first successful mechanical replacement of an organ in a human. Today, heart valve operations are routine, but developing a successful mechanical heart valve involved years of experimentation by small teams of doctors, scientists, and engineers after World War II.

About the Artifact Walls

Artifact walls, consisting of 275 linear feet of glass-fronted cases lining the central first and second floors, highlight the depth and breadth of the collections. They reflect the Museum's core mission to collect, study, and exhibit objects from our nation's rich and diverse history. This display was one of the special cases that highlight anniversaries, views into the collections, and research findings.