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The Alarming History of Medicine: Amusing Anecdotes from Hippocrates to Heart Transplants

3.47 of 5 stars 3.47  ·  rating details  ·  115 ratings  ·  12 reviews
Delightfully witty and richly informative, The Alarming History of Medicine is a collection of anecdotes describing how the historical breakthroughs in medicine were really made. Using hilarious stories, based on actual facts, Richard Gordon shows that most of the monumental discoveries were originally accidents.

A must-read for hypochondriacs, doctors, medical students, an
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Paperback, 256 pages
Published September 15th 1997 by St. Martin's Griffin (first published 1993)
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Community Reviews

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Jaime Chandra
While there are many entertaining and interesting stories contained in this book, their presentation was too disjointed to be enjoyable - one story ends without feeling quite finished, yet the next paragraph heads abruptly into new territory. I actually enjoyed the dated British vernacular - it made the book read like the era it was telling stories from.
Kimberly Badal
He took an interesting topic and managed to make it very boring and incongruous. There is no logical smooth flow and the writing style is too old school and difficult to read for such an intense topic. I believe that when you are addressing a heavy topic you should keep the writing light else you loose the reader quickly.,There are too many references even though it's a historical book. Overall very disappointed. There are much better medical history books available.
Melissa
Ok, I don't think I will be reading anymore books by this author. The book reads like a history report, not a comedy as advertised. Also, it is written in Brittish language, and assumes that the reader is from Europe, so I did not know where the author was referring to. AND, OMG run on sentences!!! Bad comma use. Bad punctuation use, and bad grammar! I read it only because what bits of history I could understand where interesting. Won't recommend to others.
Gláucia Renata
Medicina é um tema que acaba interessando e fascinando a todos, médicos e pacientes, haja vista o sucesso que as séries médicas fazem na TV.
O livro traz uma série de curiosidades sobre o tema saúde, pacientes ilustres, origem de determinados medicamentos, crendices e superstições, doenças curiosas e suas curas, médicos excêntricos e seus métodos.
Jessie Pav-Cav
Interesting, but written more like notes for a book than a proper book. There are frequent oblique references to people and situations that are not previously mentioned in the book and never further explained.
Cat.
Rather hard to read: he writes in British vernacular that's 30 years out of date. And he's got no patience for "non-medical" healing, dismisses it out-of-hand. But some of the fact-stuff is really interesting and funny.
Jaclynn
Really dull, the author uses British English which makes it a bit difficult to understand at times. Not recommended.
Abby
Completely unreadable. Very surprised this book even made it to press.
Amanda
Quite a bit of the English humor went over my head.
Richard
Makes me wonder how we got to where we are today.
Patrick Artazu
Often funny, but severely overwrought.
Kelly
Mar 22, 2009 Kelly marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
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Richard Gordon is the pen name used by Gordon Ostlere (born Gordon Stanley Ostlere on September 15, 1921), an English surgeon and anaesthetist. As Richard Gordon, Ostlere has written several novels, screenplays for film and television and accounts of popular history, mostly dealing with the practice of medicine. He is most famous for a long series of comic novels on a medical theme starting with D ...more
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“A relação da medicina com o charlatanismo é a mesma da astronomia com a astrologia. O que as estrelas predizem para os leitores de jornais é inofensivo, mas o lançamento de um ônibus espacial ou de um satélite, orientado pela astrologia, ao invés da astronomia, seria desastroso. Mas a humanidade sofre de uma fascinação eterna pelos charlatães. Talvez porque todos nós gostemos de pensar que sabemos mais do que nossos médicos.” 0 likes
“Uma população que afirma, indignada, que é perfeitamente sã agora devora drogas psicotrópicas, como se estivesse pondo açúcar nos flocos de milho.” 0 likes
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