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When the Air Hits Your Brain: Tales from Neurosurgery

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When the Air Hits Your Brain

Tales from Neurosurgery

By Frank Vertosick

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Format: Paperback / softback, 272 pages
Other Information: illustrations
Published In: United States, 15 April 2008
With poignant insight and humour, "When the Air Hits Your Brain" chronicles a man's evolution from naive and ambitious young houseman to world-class neurosurgeon. In electrifying detail, Frank Vertosick Jr describes some of the greatest challenges of his career, including a six-week-old infant with a tumour in her brain, a young man struck down in his prime by paraplegia and a clergyman with a.22-caliber bullet lodged in his skull. Told through intimate portraits of Vertosick's patients and unsparing yet fascinatingly detailed descriptions of surgical procedures, "When the Air Hits Your Brain" - the culmination of decades spent struggling to learn an unforgiving craft - illuminates both the mysteries of the mind and the realities of the operating room.

About the Author

Frank Vertosick Jr., MD, is the author of Why We Hurt and The Genius Within. He retired from surgery due to Parkinson's disease in 2002, but he still treats office patients in Washington, Pennsylvania.

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Instead of offering a collection of bizarre medical cases, brain surgeon Vertosick presents a set of harrowing clinical tales that highlight neurosurgery as risky, messy and often frustrating. The result is a riveting report that shatters the mystique of the brain surgeon as a wizard of technical prowess. Many of the patients profiled here die-an outcome not representative of neurosurgery at large, the author reassures us. The cases are drawn from Vertosick's six years of internship and residency. Among the most memorable are Andy, a Down's syndrome sufferer with multiple head and neck abnormalities who chose euthanasia over a life imprisoned in bed. We also meet Sarah, a pregnant homemaker with a malignant brain tumor who refuses radiotherapy and a therapeutic abortion. Vertosick is associate chief of neurosurgery at Western Pennsylvania Hospital in Pittsburgh. (Feb.)

"Dramatic, moving, and utterly fascinating." -- New York Times Book Review "Riveting." -- Publishers Weekly

EAN: 9780393330496
ISBN: 0393330494
Publisher: WW Norton & Co
Dimensions: 20.83 x 14.17 x 1.73 centimetres (0.23 kg)
Age Range: 15+ years
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