Complications: A Surgeon's Notes on an Imperfect Science

Paperback | April 1, 2003

byAtul Gawande

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In gripping accounts of true cases, surgeon Atul Gawande explores the power and the limits of medicine, offering an unflinching view from the scalpel's edge. Complications lays bare a science not in its idealized form but as it actually is-uncertain, perplexing, and profoundly human.

Complications is a 2002 National Book Award Finalist for Nonfiction.

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From the Publisher

In gripping accounts of true cases, surgeon Atul Gawande explores the power and the limits of medicine, offering an unflinching view from the scalpel's edge. Complications lays bare a science not in its idealized form but as it actually is-uncertain, perplexing, and profoundly human.Complications is a 2002 National Book Award Finalist ...

Atul Gawande is a surgical resident at a hospital in Boston and a staff writer on medicine and science for The New Yorker. A graduate of Harvard Medical School and the Harvard School of Public Health, he has had his writing selected to appear in The Best American Essays 2002. Gawande lives with his wife and three children in Newton, M...

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Format:PaperbackDimensions:288 pages, 8.19 × 5.47 × 0.83 inPublished:April 1, 2003Language:English

The following ISBNs are associated with this title:

ISBN - 10:0312421702

ISBN - 13:9780312421700

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Customer Reviews of Complications: A Surgeon's Notes on an Imperfect Science

Reviews

Rated 5 out of 5 by from Fantastic Fantastic read. Very insightful and informative. Stops and makes the reader think about the human condition and mortality in every situation.
Date published: 2017-01-08
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Interesting to Learn I learned so much reading this book. I'd like to be a surgeon myself, and hearing about some of his cases just confirmed it. I found this book truly enjoyable, and I read bits and pieces to my parents. I liked hearing about both his happy endings in certain cases, and failures, assuring me that surgeons can make mistakes, and that they take them seriously
Date published: 2013-07-25
Rated 4 out of 5 by from Scary! Dr. Gawande is a surgical resident in Boston and writes about the somewhat taboo subject of how medicine isn't an exact science. This book covers many subjects, including how doctors really are just humans, how easy it is for them to make mistakes, and when good doctors go bad. Then, Dr. Gawande supplies lots of examples from his career and others that prove these points. Some of the points that Gawande raise are alarming, but as you read through the reasoning behind them, you can understand them. For example, how do doctors get practice on new technologies or methodologies? They have to practice somewhere and you'd be surprised how little they get before their first patient is subjected to the new procedure. The first third of the book had me captivated. It was kind of scary, yet very interesting. I found that the middle of the book dragged a bit but that things picked up again near the end.
Date published: 2009-09-04
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Great writer I came across this book on the internet one day just randomly. I had not heard about it before. But based on the reviews I bought it and another of Gawande's books. I loved both of them. They are written so well! I love the way Gawande presents his topics, with historical, factual, and human elements. Highly recommended!
Date published: 2008-12-23
Rated 5 out of 5 by from Smart, interesting, and compelling. Loved it! This book is abolutely one of the greatest books I have ever read, and I have read many. The skilled writting and the extremely interesting topics make this book a must-read. I highly recommend this book to you and to all readers of any age.
Date published: 2006-06-04

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Editorial Reviews

"None surpass Gawande in the ability to create a sense of immediacy, in his power to conjure the reality of the ward, the thrill of the moment-by-moment medical or surgical drama. Complications impresses for its truth and authenticity, virtues that it owes to its author being as much forceful writer as uncompromising chronicler." -The New York Times Book Review"No one writes about medicine as a human subject as well as Atul Gawande. His stories about becoming a surgeon are scary, funny, absorbing....Complications is a uniquely soulful book about the science of mending bodies." -Adam Gopnik, author of Paris to the Moon"Gawande is arguably the best nonfiction doctor-writer around....He's prescient and thoughtful...the heir to Lewis Thomas' humble, insightful and brilliantly crafted oeuvre." -Salon.com"Complications is a book about medicine that reads like a thriller. Every subject Atul Gawande touches is probed and dissected and turned inside out with such deftness and feeling and counterintuitive insight that the reader is left breathless." -Malcolm Gladwell, author of The Tipping Point"Gawande is a writer with a scalpel pen and an X-ray eye.... He turns every case--from gunshot wounds to morbid obesity to flesh-eating bacteria--into a thriller in miniature. Diagnosis: riveting." -Time"Gawande's prose, much like the scalpel he wields, is precise, daring, but never reckless....Much like reading George Orwell, the reader emerges entertained, enlightened, transformed and immensely satisfied." -Abraham Verghese, author of My Own Country"Wrenching human tales...Gawande has pushed the medical yarn in a new direction." -The Boston Globe"Atul Gawande is a rare and wonderful storyteller who portrays his profession with bravery and humanity." -Ellen Goodman, Pulitzer Prize-winning columnist"The stories in Complications are gripping medical mysteries that always have something extra. Gawande draws you in with the story but leaves you wiser about science, about health care issues, and even about the human condition." -Michael Kinsley