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January 1992

The Making of a Surgeon Revisited

Author Affiliations

From the Department of Surgery, Cornell University Medical College, New York, NY.

Arch Surg. 1992;127(1):16-20. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1992.01420010022003

The topic that I am going to address is specific with regard to specialty, and I do recognize that we have a significant number of nonsurgical members. Of the nonsurgical members, I beg your indulgence; on the other hand, you may wish to use some of what I'm about to say as ammunition in your future interaction with surgeons.

Nolan's book, The Making of a Surgeon, was published in 1968. In that book, he detailed the development of a surgeon primarily from the standpoint of the rigors of surgical residency training. In doing so, Bill Nolan gave us and the public at large a rather narrow view of a surgeon, having passed over the early development and having not gone far enough to examine that evolution beyond a short period of training. His book is not unlike the plethora of movies, Gross Anatomy, etc, that capitalize on detailing the rigors