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May 16, 1986

Learning About Patients: I'll Take Tomorrow

Author Affiliations

Case Western Reserve University School of Medicine Cleveland

JAMA. 1986;255(19):2600. doi:10.1001/jama.1986.03370190084014

To the Editor.—  I must take issue with one aspect of Robert Lanza's review1 of I'll Take Tomorrow, by Mary Gohlke. Dr Lanza believes that this autobiography of the first long-term survivor of a heart-lung transplant "would probably only be of limited interest and value to physicians and other health care professionals."It is, on the contrary, of the utmost importance that all of us engaged in recommending and performing procedures such as this develop some understanding of how our patients perceive them. Our training and experience make it difficult for us to understand what lay people think and feel about almost any aspect of medical care, let alone transplant surgery or life-threatening illness. Books such as I'll Take Tomorrow, or Heart-sounds, by Martha Lear, help us to see our work with new eyes, to feel what our patients may feel. And without some ability on our parts to share