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Books, Journals, New Media
March 15, 2000

StoriesPatients and Doctors: Life-Changing Stories From Primary Care

Author Affiliations

Harriet S.MeyerMD, Contributing EditorJonathan D.EldredgeMLS, PhD, Journal Review EditorRobertHoganMD, adviser for new media


Not Available


edited by Jeffrey Borkan, Shmuel Reis, Dov Steinmetz, and Jack Medalie, 221 pp, $24.95, ISBN 0-299-16340-7, Madison, Wis, University of Wisconsin Press, 1999.

JAMA. 2000;283(11):1488. doi:10.1001/jama.283.11.1488-JBK0315-4-1

Despite the evidence of patient charts and journal articles, physicians are no more illiterate than other professionals. Patients and Doctors shows that they can write wonderfully when they tell stories about patients.

I enjoyed these short anecdotes, most only two or three pages long. Who could resist tales of our heroism—like the freezing midnight odyssey of a Dutch general practitioner across flooded farmland to rescue an appendicitis patient? Many of the most unlikely stories ring a bell. I loved reading of the mysterious summons to a luxury hotel to deliver a preperformance vitamin injection into the buttock of a famous rock singer. This may not sound like a universal experience, but it has happened to me.

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