When Doctors Get Sick

  • Harvey Mandell
  • Howard Spiro

Table of contents

  1. Front Matter
    Pages i-xix
  2. Cardiovascular Diseases

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 1-1
    2. Maurice H. Pappworth
      Pages 7-17
    3. Robert L. Seaver
      Pages 29-38
    4. Lewis Dexter
      Pages 39-43
    5. Hastings K. Wright
      Pages 45-49
  3. Orthopedic-Neuromuscular Disorders

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 51-51
    2. Denise Bowes
      Pages 53-58
    3. William D. Sharpe
      Pages 59-62
    4. David B. Bingham
      Pages 71-77
    5. Joyce L. Dunlop
      Pages 79-87
    6. Miriam C. Chellingsworth
      Pages 89-93
    7. Stephen N. Sullivan
      Pages 95-103
    8. Sam J. Sugar
      Pages 105-118
    9. Donald B. Hackel
      Pages 119-121
    10. Louis B. Guss
      Pages 123-127
  4. Neuropsychiatric Disorders

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 129-129
    2. Lawrence R. Freedman
      Pages 131-138
    3. Magoo
      Pages 139-142
    4. Louise Redmond
      Pages 143-150
    5. A. Rosemary Mackenzie
      Pages 151-158
    6. Michael Rose
      Pages 159-168
  5. Gastrointestinal Diseases

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 169-169
    2. Judith Alexander Brice
      Pages 171-192
    3. Louise Scott
      Pages 193-199
    4. Maurice Raskin
      Pages 201-211
    5. Mallory Stephens
      Pages 213-227
    6. R. F. Spooner
      Pages 229-241
    7. David E. Hein
      Pages 243-257
    8. Harrison F. Wood
      Pages 259-265
  6. Cancer

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 267-267
    2. Albert Luther
      Pages 269-275
    3. John A. McCool
      Pages 277-286
    4. Harvey Mandell
      Pages 287-293
    5. Nicholas V. Steiner
      Pages 295-304
    6. Charles S. Kleinman
      Pages 305-316
    7. James C. Hayes
      Pages 317-320
    8. Moses Llewellyn
      Pages 321-324
    9. Jack J. Lewis
      Pages 325-333
    10. Richard E. Thompson
      Pages 335-344
    11. Harold W. Schell
      Pages 345-348
    12. Hadley L. Conn Jr.
      Pages 349-355
  7. Chronic Diseases

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 357-357
    2. A. Peter Lundin
      Pages 359-367
    3. Gwendolyn Austen
      Pages 369-380
  8. Acute and/or Self-Limited Diseases

    1. Front Matter
      Pages 381-381
    2. Barbara Young
      Pages 383-391

About this book


When a doctor gets sick, his status changes. No longer is his role de­ fined as deriving from doctus, i. e. , learned, but as from patiens, the present participle of the deponent verb, patior, i. e. , to suffer, with all the passive acceptance of pain the verb implies. From pass us, the past participle, we get the word passion, with its wide gamut of emotional allusions, ranging from animal lust to the sufferings of martyrs. It is the connotation, not the denotation, of the word that defines the change of status. When a doctor is sick enough to be admitted to a hospital, he can no longer write orders; orders are written about him, removing him from control of his own situation. One recalls a sonnet from W. H. Auden's sequence, The Quest, which closes with the lines: Unluckily they were their situation: One should not give a poisoner medicine, A conjuror fine apparatus, Nor a rifle to a melancholic bore. That is a reasonable expression of twentieth-century skepticism and ra­ tionalism. Almost all medical literature is written from the doctor's point of view. Only a few medically trained writers-one thinks of Chekhov's Ward Six-manage to incorporate the patient's response to his situa­ tion. Patients' voices were not much in evidence until well into the twentieth century, but an early example is John Donne's Devotions upon Emergent Occasions (1624).


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Editors and affiliations

  • Harvey Mandell
    • 1
  • Howard Spiro
    • 2
  1. 1.The William W. Backus HospitalNorwichUSA
  2. 2.Yale University School of MedicineNew HavenUSA

Bibliographic information

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