Genetic Rounds : A Doctor's Encounters in the Field That Revolutionized Medicine
Renowned pediatrician and author Dr. Robert Marion, whose bestselling book The Intern Blues is revered by doctors of all ages, offers a powerful and moving account of his experiences in modern genetics. His gripping stories illuminate a cutting-edge field of impossible moral complexities and incredible scientific breakthroughs that draw him deep into the lives of his patients and their families when they need him the most.
Genetics is a specialty of secrets. After thirty years as a pediatric geneticist in New York City, Dr. Robert Marion knows things about his patients that their friends, their families, and even they themselves do not. Having access to this kind of inside information is at once a terrific honor and a terrible burden. It requires Dr. Marion to play detective, philosopher, physician, and friend, sometimes all over the course of a single visit.
In Genetic Rounds, he tells the surprising true stories of daily life as a clinical geneticist. From the girl whose bones break at the lightest touch to the boy who is unable to sweat, Dr. Marion imparts the life-long lessons he has learned from his most incredible cases. He walks us through perplexing medical puzzles that have sharpened his wit and transformed him into a Sherlock Holmes in his field. He shares ingenious practical insights that have changed his patients' lives. And he delves into the moral quandaries through which his patients in turn have changed his life: Should he wait until after Christmas to break bad news to a frightened family? Should he tell a close friend that his daughter may have a life-threatening, previously undiagnosed disease? And, most importantly, how can he persevere in a specialty that deals with so much heartbreak?
The first book of its kind, Genetic Rounds is the story of a remarkable doctor in a field unlike any other. With unforgettable candor and compassion, Dr. Marion not only explores the human side of medicine: he shows what medicine can teach us about being human.
"Genetic Rounds is part medical detective story, part scientific tour de force, and part highly personal and emotional story of a doctor and the children and families who have shaped his career and his life in this fascinating field." --Perri Klass, MD, author of Treatment Kind and Fair: Letters to a Young Doctor
From Genetic Rounds
"I've learned that in medicine, virtually anything is possible, that no matter how difficult or unlikely a situation might be, with hard work, perseverance, persistence, and the ability to work with people who are brilliant and creative, miracles can happen."
Praise for The Intern Blues
"A candid . . . gripping account." --The New York Times Book Review
"A thought-provoking study of real human beings." --Booklist
"An important book for anyone contemplating the long, arduous task of becoming a doctor." --Library Journal
Praise for Learning to Play God
"Clear, immediate and moving . . . provides as good a feel for the texture of medical training as any I've read." --The New York Times Book Review
Although he's often uncomfortable about it, as a clinical geneticist, Marion (The Intern Blues) examines his patients' genetic secrets--information they sometimes don't reveal even to close relatives--in order to help them make family planning decisions . His ability to solve medical mysteries can be a blessing: after a mother is accused of child abuse, Marion is able to use genetic analysis to diagnose brittle bone disease in the baby and to help return the infant to her mother. But his diagnostic skills become a curse when he tells his former college roommate that his toddler isn't just a slow starter but likely has Bardet-Biedl syndrome: the enraged friend never speaks to Marion again. In a headline-making case, he tries to explain why a pair of twins joined at the head lack speech. Although his short pieces lack the depth and finesse of essays by other physician-writers like Oliver Sachs, and Marion's case studies would frighten even the steeliest of would-be parents, Marion, director of clinical genetics at Montefiore Medical Center and Blythedale Children's Hospital in New York State, is a sympathetic advocate for his patients who lucidly interprets complex medical conditions for lay readers. (Oct.)
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October 04, 2009
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