The Laws of Medicine: Field Notes from an Uncertain Science

The Laws of Medicine: Field Notes from an Uncertain Science

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Hardcover, Pages: 96

Genres: Nonfiction, Health, Medicine, Science

Language: English

Reads: 89

Downloads: 5245

Rating: Rated: 2928 timesRate It

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Book Summary

Essential, required reading for doctors and patients alike: A Pulitzer Prize-winning author and one of the world’s premiere cancer researchers reveals an urgent philosophy on the little-known principles that govern medicine—and how understanding these principles can empower us all.

Over a decade ago, when Siddhartha Mukherjee was a young, exhausted, and isolated medical resident, he discovered a book that would forever change the way he understood the medical profession. The book, The Youngest Science, forced Dr. Mukherjee to ask himself an urgent, fundamental question: Is medicine a “science”? Sciences must have laws—statements of truth based on repeated experiments that describe some universal attribute of nature. But does medicine have laws like other sciences?

Dr. Mukherjee has spent his career pondering this question—a question that would ultimately produce some of most serious thinking he would do around the tenets of his discipline—culminating in The Laws of Medicine. In this important treatise, he investigates the most perplexing and illuminating cases of his career that ultimately led him to identify the three key principles that govern medicine.

Brimming with fascinating historical details and modern medical wonders, this important book is a fascinating glimpse into the struggles and Eureka! moments that people outside of the medical profession rarely see. Written with Dr. Mukherjee’s signature eloquence and passionate prose, The Laws of Medicine is a critical read, not just for those in the medical profession, but for everyone who is moved to better understand how their health and well-being is being treated. Ultimately, this book lays the groundwork for a new way of understanding medicine, now and into the future.

Reader Reviews
  •    Kagagar Bereitte
    2020
    The encomiums are copious concerning creations by Oncologist/Pulitzer Prize winner Siddhartha Mukherjee. Having read his “Emperor of All Maladies: A Biography of Cancer” to “The Laws of Medicine: Field Notes from an Uncertain Science.” Both teach us law one: “A strong intuition is much more powerful than a weak test.”

    Though not as involved or page heavy as previous works; this TED talks book helps us understand the reality that confronts all physicians having to make faultless decisions from imperfect information. Mukherjee documents his time in medical school (1995) and his mentors (Astronomer Tycho Brahe, Physician Lewis Thomas) that guide him.

    “Law three for every perfect medical experiment, there is a perfect human bias. Why do some cancers carry similarities?...Humans are the final arbiters and interpreters of the medicine.”
    ---Siddhartha Mukherjee, MD

    The Laws of Medicine: Field Notes from an Uncertain Science is a depiction of the uncertainties in medicine. He lauds about how hope is both beautiful/dangerous (especially when traces of tumor are left behind). The three laws are discussed, and Ovid comes to mind with “dolor hic tibi proderit olim.” This book is “Mukherjee light.”
    Reply
  •    Dogrel Lanfair
    2020
    I have learned so much more information from this man in the past couple of hours than I've ever come close to learn anything so useful in classroom lectures. What an unbelievable experience this man emits to the future of medicine. I seriously wish he was my professor!! What an exemplary genius!!!!

    The study of medicine is grueling and challenging. It's an everyday discovery to come up with the laws explained in this little book!! This is a great reminder that everyone is different, just as in medicine, where treatment and diagnoses vary, but an error not promptly prevented can be of serious circumstances to the patient and spread out so much damage.

    This has been an excellent and highly recommended read.
    Reply

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