A New Take on the Canonic Book The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down

Book Review by Luxin Yin More than two decades after its publication in 1997, Anne Fadiman’s The Spirit Catches You and You Fall Down is frequently required reading in medical schools and used to train future practitioners on the importance of cross-cultural communication. The book concerns the difficulties faced by a young Hmong epileptic, Lia […]

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Music and Healing

Book Review by Professor Robert Abrams, Weill-Cornell Medicine, New York The Sound of Being Human by Jude Rogers, published by White Rabbit, London, UK, 2022 In recent years a fascinating neurobiological literature has emerged, describing the connections between music and one’s earliest memories and emotions.[1] Clinical applications have also been developed: Patients with advanced dementia […]

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Empire of Pain: How One Family’s Addiction to Profit Contributed to the Opioid Epidemic

Book Review by Isabella Watts Patrick Radden Keefe. Empire of Pain: How One Family’s Addiction to Profit Contributed to the Opioid Epidemic. Picador 2021. ISBN-13: ‎978-1984899019, 640 pages. They say that life can be stranger than fiction, and this is truly how readers will feel after finishing each chapter of Patrick Radden Keefe’s well-researched history […]

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The Song of Our Scars: Exploring the Social and Scientific Fundamentals of Chronic Pain

Book Review by Vishal Khetpal The Song of Our Scars: The Untold Story of Pain. Haider Warraich. Basic Books. ISBN 9781541675308. Skim through any bestseller list in adult non-fiction these days and you will find books that grapple with pain and chronic illness. Bessel van der Kolk’s The Body Keeps Score maps the landscape of […]

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The Invisible Kingdom: Beyond “Heartsink”

Book Review by Samuel Freeman In 1988 general practitioner T.C. O’Dowd published a study in the British Medical Journal, “Five years of heartsink patients in general practice.”[1] The study describes a group of patients who “exasperate, defeat, and overwhelm their doctors by their behaviour” and concludes that they are “a disparate group of individuals whose […]

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Renaissance Medicine: A Short History of European Medicine in the Sixteenth Century

Book review by Katherine D. Van Schaik Vivian Nutton. Renaissance Medicine: A Short History of European Medicine in the Sixteenth Century. Routledge, 2022. Vivian Nutton’s comprehensive Renaissance Medicine: A Short History of European Medicine in the Sixteenth Century, written largely during the pandemic, provides an overview of a century of medical transformations in Europe. Nutton […]

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