Louise's Reviews > Monday Mornings

Monday Mornings by Sanjay Gupta
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Apr 15, 12

bookshelves: fiction
Read in April, 2012

Grand Central Publishing | March 6, 2012 | Hardcover |ISBN 978-0-446-58385-5

Story Description:

Every time surgeons operate, they're betting their skills are better than the brain tumor, the faulty heart valve, the fractured femur. Sometimes, they're wrong. At Chelsea General, surgeons answer for bad outcomes at the Morbidity and Mortality conference, known as M & M. This extraordinary peek behind the curtain into what is considered the most secretive meeting in all of medicine is the back drop for the entire book.

Monday Mornings, by Dr. Sanjay Gupta, follows the lives of five surgeons at Chelsea General as they push the limits of their abilities and confront their personal and professional failings, often in front of their peers at M & M. It is on Monday mornings that reflection and introspection occurs, usually in private. It is Monday Mornings that provides a unique look at the real method in which surgeons learn - through their mistakes. It is Monday Mornings when, if you're lucky, you have a chance at redemption.

My Review:

MONDAY MORNINGS reads like a drama, an adventure, a suspense, a bit of romance all rolled into one. This fast paced novel keeps you turning page after page.

Five surgeons from the fictional Chelsea General Hospital take on various patients with various complaints and health conditions. Some are extremely serious, some not so serious.

We all seem to forget that doctors and surgeons are humans like us, and humans make mistakes and doctors are no exception. Each Monday morning the doctors hold an M & M meeting, Mortality and Morbidity where someone is called up on the carpet in front of their peers and must admit their mistakes. These are closed meetings with no CEO’s, no lawyers, and no other administrators present. These meetings are strictly for the doctors only to hash out what went wrong and how they can prevent certain mistakes and disasters from ever happening again.

One particular doctor was responsible for killing a young boy and as anyone who has a conscience would, drove this poor man into a serious state of fear and doubt over his ability to continue as a surgeon. The meetings are a way for these doctors to learn through their mistakes.

Although written as fiction, this novel reads like real life and I’m pretty certain what is written in this novel is not too far from the truth of what really does go on. I can see now why doctors must purchase large and exorbitant amounts of malpractice insurance.

As Samuel Shem, MD said of Monday Mornings, the novel is “filled with memorable characters and searing moments, written with a surgeon’s deftness and a healer’s heart”.

Dr. Gupta has done an excellent job and gets two thumbs up from me and I’ll be recommending it to my friends for sure. Very well done!

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