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Final Exam: A Surgeon's Reflections on Mortality

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Final Exam: A Surgeon's Reflections on Mortality Cover

 

Synopses & Reviews

Publisher Comments:

Dr. Chen, a surgeon specializing in liver transplants, is her own patient in Final Exam, a series of thoughtful, moving essays on the troubled relationship between modern medical practice and the emotional events surrounding death. . . . Dr. Chen vividly conveys the fears and anxieties of medical training, as well as its pleasures. . . . Her most hopeful argument is herself: a doctor open to confronting her own fears and doubts, and willing to prepare her patients for the final exam.

-The New York Times

Chen writes with immaculately honed prose and moral passion as she recounts her quest to overcome ‘lessons in denial and depersonalization, ' vividly evoking the paradoxes of end-of-life care in an age of life-preserving treatments.

-Publishers Weekly

Chen has a clear and unwavering eye for exposing the reality behind the mythology of medical training. . . . We would all do well to listen to what she has to say.

-San Francisco Chronicle

By sharing stories of her own maturation into a healer as well as a technically skilled doctor, Chen in this fresh and honest memoir engages and educates on many levels.

-Los Angeles Times

Final Exam is a revealing and heartfelt book. Pauline Chen takes us where few do-inside the feeling of practicing surgery, with its doubts, failures, and triumphs. Her tales are also uncommonly moving, most especially when contemplating death and our difficulties as doctors and patients in coming to grips with it.

-Atul Gawande, author of Complications: A Surgeon's Notes on an Imperfect Science

Chen has a clear and unwavering eye. . . . We would all do well to listen to what she has to say.

-San Francisco Chronicle

Chen in this fresh and honest memoir engages and educates on many levels. . . . She] deserves high kudos for candor and compassion.

-Los Angeles Times Book Review

Chen . . . uses words with a sugeon's precision, courageously confonting difficult subject matter with stunning results. She aces this ‘Final Exam.'

-New York Post

Restrained but impassioned prose.

-Elle

A] compassionate, compelling memoir.”

—People

“Truly engaging.

-Time Out Chicago

A graceful, precise, and empathetic writer enthralled by her work, Chen imparts much about medical schooling and surgery, too.

-Booklist

This well-written, thoughtful, and engaging books is highly recommended.

-Library Journal

Chen writes with tenderness and clarity, as if sharing her most intimate thoughts and concerns with a close friend or sister. . . . Chen's deep compassion and humanity shine in this narrative. Her devotion to patients as well as her honesty about life and death issues makes this a compelling read.

-Rocky Mountain News

This is an affecting, convincing look at the questions of death from a physician's point of view-presented with honesty.

-Desert Morning News

Remarkable . . . a strongly written memoir filled with emotion.

-Columbus Dispatch

A fascinating, compelling work.”

—Journal Inquirer

Fro

Review:

"Like most physicians, Chen, a transplant surgeon and former UCLA faculty member, entered medicine in order to save lives. But as a medical student in the 1980s, she discovered that she had to face death repeatedly and 'found disturbing inconsistencies' as she learned from teachers and colleagues 'to suspend or suppress any shared human feelings for my dying patients.' Chen writes with immaculately honed prose and moral passion as she recounts her quest to overcome 'lessons in denial and depersonalization,' vividly evoking the paradoxes of end-of-life care in an age of life-preserving treatments. Chen charts her personal and professional rites of passage in dealing with mortality, from her first dissection of a human cadaver, through the first time she pronounces a patient dead, to having to officially took responsibility for the accidental death of a patient in her care. Focusing on the enormous moral and psychological pressures on doctors and on the need for greater empathy in hospital end-of-life care, Chen also reports on signs of change within the profession, stemming from both criticisms of training and institutions and from physicians' initiatives to bring a greater sense of shared humanity to their work." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Review:

"Like most physicians, Chen, a transplant surgeon and former UCLA faculty member, entered medicine in order to save lives. But as a medical student in the 1980s, she discovered that she had to face death repeatedly and 'found disturbing inconsistencies' as she learned from teachers and colleagues 'to suspend or suppress any shared human feelings for my dying patients.' Chen writes with immaculately honed prose and moral passion as she recounts her quest to overcome 'lessons in denial and depersonalization,' vividly evoking the paradoxes of end-of-life care in an age of life-preserving treatments. Chen charts her personal and professional rites of passage in dealing with mortality, from her first dissection of a human cadaver, through the first time she pronounces a patient dead, to having to officially took responsibility for the accidental death of a patient in her care. Focusing on the enormous moral and psychological pressures on doctors and on the need for greater empathy in hospital end-of-life care, Chen also reports on signs of change within the profession, stemming from both criticisms of training and institutions and from physicians' initiatives to bring a greater sense of shared humanity to their work. Announced first printing of 75,000. (Jan. 17)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)

Review:

"Final Exam is a revealing and heartfelt book. Pauline Chen takes us where few do — inside the feeling of practicing surgery, with its doubts, failures, and triumphs. Her tales are also uncommonly moving, most especially when contemplating death and our difficulties as doctors and patients in coming to grips with it." Atul Gawande

Review:

"A series of thoughtful, moving essays on the troubled relationship between modern medical practice and the emotional events surrounding death....Dr. Chen vividly conveys the fears and anxieties of medical training, as well as its pleasures." William Grimes, New York Times

Synopsis:

In a series of reflections on the world of modern medicine, a young doctor describes how physicians must deal with the inescapable reality of death, the risks and rewards of emotional involvement, patients' expectations concerning their doctors, and her personal experiences throughout her education, residency, and practice with mortality. 75,000 first printing.

Synopsis:

A brilliant transplant surgeon brings compassion and narrative drama to the fearful reality that every doctor must face: the inevitability of mortality.

When Pauline Chen began medical school, she dreamed of saving lives. What she could not predict was how much death would be a part of her work. Almost immediately, she found herself wrestling with medicine's most profound paradox-that aprofession premised on caring for the ill also systematically depersonalizes dying. Final Exam follows Chen over the course of her education and practice as she struggles to reconcile the lessons of hertraining with her innate sense of empathy and humanity. A superb addition to the best medical literature of our time.

From the Trade Paperback edition.

About the Author

Pauline W. Chen attended Harvard University and the Feinberg School of Medicine at Northwestern University and completed her surgical training at Yale University, the National Cancer Institute (National Institutes of Health), and UCLA, where she was most recently a member of the faculty. In 1999, she was named the UCLA Outstanding Physician of the Year. Dr. Chen’s first nationally published piece, "Dead Enough? The Paradox of Brain Death," appeared in the fall 2005 issue of The Virginia Quarterly Review and was a finalist for a 2006 National Magazine Award. She is also the 2005 cowinner of the Staige D. Blackford Prize for Nonfiction and was a finalist for the 2002 James Kirkwood Prize in Creative Writing. She lives near Boston with her husband and children.

Table of Contents

1. Principles — Resurrectionist — Into the nexus — See one, do one — 2. Practice — The informal curriculum — M and M — The visible woman — First, do not harm — Sorry to inform you — Through the looking glass.

Product Details

ISBN:
9780307267283
Subtitle:
A Surgeon's Reflections on Mortality
Publisher:
Alfred A. Knopf
Author:
Pauline W. Chen
Author:
Chen, Pauline W.
Subject:
Health & Fitness-General
Subject:
Health & Fitness : General
Subject:
Terminal care
Subject:
General
Subject:
Medical - Physicians
Subject:
Surgery - General
Subject:
General Health & Fitness
Subject:
Audio Books-Biography
Subject:
Biography/Medical
Subject:
Health and Medicine-Essays
Subject:
Health and Medicine-Professional Medical Reference
Subject:
main_subject
Subject:
all_subjects
Publication Date:
20070109
Binding:
ELECTRONIC
Language:
English
Pages:
267

Related Subjects

» Biography » Medical
» Health and Self-Help » Health and Medicine » General
» Health and Self-Help » Health and Medicine » Medical Specialties
» Health and Self-Help » Health and Medicine » Professional Medical Reference
» History and Social Science » Sociology » General

Final Exam: A Surgeon's Reflections on Mortality
0 stars - 0 reviews
$ In Stock
Product details 267 pages Knopf Doubleday Publishing Group - English 9780307267283 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "Like most physicians, Chen, a transplant surgeon and former UCLA faculty member, entered medicine in order to save lives. But as a medical student in the 1980s, she discovered that she had to face death repeatedly and 'found disturbing inconsistencies' as she learned from teachers and colleagues 'to suspend or suppress any shared human feelings for my dying patients.' Chen writes with immaculately honed prose and moral passion as she recounts her quest to overcome 'lessons in denial and depersonalization,' vividly evoking the paradoxes of end-of-life care in an age of life-preserving treatments. Chen charts her personal and professional rites of passage in dealing with mortality, from her first dissection of a human cadaver, through the first time she pronounces a patient dead, to having to officially took responsibility for the accidental death of a patient in her care. Focusing on the enormous moral and psychological pressures on doctors and on the need for greater empathy in hospital end-of-life care, Chen also reports on signs of change within the profession, stemming from both criticisms of training and institutions and from physicians' initiatives to bring a greater sense of shared humanity to their work." Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "Like most physicians, Chen, a transplant surgeon and former UCLA faculty member, entered medicine in order to save lives. But as a medical student in the 1980s, she discovered that she had to face death repeatedly and 'found disturbing inconsistencies' as she learned from teachers and colleagues 'to suspend or suppress any shared human feelings for my dying patients.' Chen writes with immaculately honed prose and moral passion as she recounts her quest to overcome 'lessons in denial and depersonalization,' vividly evoking the paradoxes of end-of-life care in an age of life-preserving treatments. Chen charts her personal and professional rites of passage in dealing with mortality, from her first dissection of a human cadaver, through the first time she pronounces a patient dead, to having to officially took responsibility for the accidental death of a patient in her care. Focusing on the enormous moral and psychological pressures on doctors and on the need for greater empathy in hospital end-of-life care, Chen also reports on signs of change within the profession, stemming from both criticisms of training and institutions and from physicians' initiatives to bring a greater sense of shared humanity to their work. Announced first printing of 75,000. (Jan. 17)" Publishers Weekly (Copyright Reed Business Information, Inc.)
"Review" by , "Final Exam is a revealing and heartfelt book. Pauline Chen takes us where few do — inside the feeling of practicing surgery, with its doubts, failures, and triumphs. Her tales are also uncommonly moving, most especially when contemplating death and our difficulties as doctors and patients in coming to grips with it."
"Review" by , "A series of thoughtful, moving essays on the troubled relationship between modern medical practice and the emotional events surrounding death....Dr. Chen vividly conveys the fears and anxieties of medical training, as well as its pleasures."
"Synopsis" by , In a series of reflections on the world of modern medicine, a young doctor describes how physicians must deal with the inescapable reality of death, the risks and rewards of emotional involvement, patients' expectations concerning their doctors, and her personal experiences throughout her education, residency, and practice with mortality. 75,000 first printing.
"Synopsis" by , A brilliant transplant surgeon brings compassion and narrative drama to the fearful reality that every doctor must face: the inevitability of mortality.

When Pauline Chen began medical school, she dreamed of saving lives. What she could not predict was how much death would be a part of her work. Almost immediately, she found herself wrestling with medicine's most profound paradox-that aprofession premised on caring for the ill also systematically depersonalizes dying. Final Exam follows Chen over the course of her education and practice as she struggles to reconcile the lessons of hertraining with her innate sense of empathy and humanity. A superb addition to the best medical literature of our time.

From the Trade Paperback edition.

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