The Making of a Surgeon in the 21st Century Paperback – Feb 1 2008
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About the Author
Miller is co-founder, Administrative Director, and a therapist for the Christian agency, MASTERPEACE Center for Counseling and Development, in Tecumseh, Michigan. For twenty-two years he has helped people through counseling, writing, public speaking, and his radio talk show. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
Top Customer Reviews
It is a poignant and up-to-date book with lots of entertaining stories and valuable medical information. I highly recommend it!
Miller entertainingly depicts the grueling culture of medicine and the making of a surgeon in our society.
I recommend highly.
Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
A better word would be a colourful account of his experiences as a resident. He not only explains the program in easy to comprehend prose, it is his anecdotes, describing the many characters that make-up this world that is entertaining as well as intriguing. About halfway through the text, I wondered if he had changed the names of the attending staff, nurses, and fellow surgeons that he profiles, because his characterizations are really, for the most part, quite scathing. In some cases the descriptions bordered on the libellous, smelling a legal suit some time in the future. However I'm sure his editors took this into consideration before publication. I certainly hope so.
The most revealing and educational part of the book was Miller's explanation of the standard step-by-step procedure (the Advanced Trauma Life Support protocols) when working in the ER, the initial steps of trauma management. Interestingly it is broken down simply so that the attending staff do not have to "think", but sequentially run through this procedure of "A is for Airway, B is for Breathing, C is for circulation, D is for Disability and E is for exposure." (P. 207) Miller is extremely annoyed how TV dramas as well as `reality' documentaries give the wrong impression to add to the pathos. In fact the ATLS protocols, following the A, B, C, D, E standard procedure avoids the chaos, ensuring the best for the trauma victim. This section of the text was extremely informative.
By the end of Miller's Chief Residency, he had the confidence and the confidence of his teachers to forge on alone, and realized he had truly become a surgeon. Having read the book in an afternoon, his writing was such that I felt his relief and sense of accomplishment by the end of his five-year residency. This has to be one of the most difficult and gruelling training out of all the professions, physically, intellectually and emotionally. In the Epilogue, Miller expresses his ambivalence about the current residency system in terms of its viciousness and amazing effectiveness in producing top-notch surgeons. The system hasn't changed since the 19th century. The process certainly takes its toll but for a price and is the price worth it?
A recommended read for anyone interested in the education of a surgeon.
Dr. Miller comes through with what feels like a natural follow-up of Dr. Nolen's work. There are interesting comparisons of several features of our current training as opposed to that of Dr. Nolen's era.
This book was very entertaining, critical and even funny. Suitable for both the non-health system related reader, as well as medical students and residents as a way of comparing our own training. Dr. Miller managed to explain technical terms in a very simple and short fashion that doesn't interrupt his rhythm even for the expert surgical readers.
I highly recommend this book particularly to medical students contemplating a surgical career. If you don't find yourself laughing at Miller's humor, then surgery might not be your most suitable future!
What I don't like is his attitutde toward nurses. On more than one occassion, he calls them "bitches." He apparently had some negative encounters with nurses and therefore seems to group them all into this category. In discussing pediatric nurses, he mentions how nurses believe they need to be patient advocates which he disagrees with. He actually says that they should not be advocates but rather simply caregivers. In other words, just shut up and do what the doctors tell you. He apparently doesn't like nurses descibing themselves as patient advocates because this because it implies that the patients have something they need to be protected from (i.e. the doctors) which he seems to take offense to. I personally feel that nurses should be advocates in addition to caregivers and that sometimes patients do need protection, someone who is looking out for their best needs.
Granted, what I have just said may not accurately describe his true feelings about nurses in general, but it is the impression that he gives in the book. Other then that, it's a great read for anyone in the medical field or a layperson (like myself) who just enjoys reading these kinds of books.