How Death Becomes Life: Notes from a Transplant Surgeon
Gripping and evocative, How Death Becomes Life takes us inside the operating room and presents the stark dilemmas that transplant surgeons must face daily:
How much risk should a healthy person be allowed to take to save someone she loves?
Should a patient suffering from alcoholism receive a healthy liver?
The human story behind the most exceptional medicine of our...more
As a nurse, this book intrigued and fascinated me all together. The author details cases of s ...more
Although in his introduction to his book transplant surgeon Joshua Mezrich claims “the following book is neither a memoir nor a complete history of transplantation”, in fact it encompasses elements of both. In the first couple of hundred pages he highlights key moments in research and experimentation, from the late nineteenth century through to the remarkable work being done today. He expresses his admiration for the early pioneers of transplant surgery, doctors who were determined and courageou ...more
As a non-medical professional, the only time you will come up against the world of hospitals will be from personal experience. I have been in hospital wards waiting for a friend or relative, anxious, hesitant, with a lurking ba ...more
Mezrich offers fascinating insights into the world of transplant surgery: its history, its ethics, its successes and its failures. Detailed accounts of the evolution of transplantation are interspersed with pe ...more
As a Brit I found reading the experiences of an American surgeon within the context of their health care system very interesting and opened my eyes to how it developed.
I like the layout, very well done, it clearly discusses the different organs interwoven with the history of the ability to transplant each one and rounds off with looking at individua ...more
I’m not a great reader of non fiction however the subject of transplantation interests and fascinates me so the chance of getting a greater insight into this fascinating speciality really appealed. I have no medical background but found this reasonably easy to understand although the names and functions of some body parts did go over my head a little after a while.
The book is a mix of history and personal experiences, many of which are if the author although some are third hand. I found the his ...more
How Death Becomes Life is a fascinating, thought-provoking and often emotive insight into organ transplantation, past and present. The book contains a wealth of stories about the pioneers of organ transplantation, as well as first-hand accounts of present-day organ transplantation surgery. It also touches on ethical, legal and social issues relating to organ transplantation and ponders on potential advances in the field.
As a ...more
It did take me a while to get going with this book as it starts off with a LOT of the history which involved a lot of medical terms. There were parts at the beginning where I found myself skim-reading which was disappointing as I do try hard not to do this with books. Nonetheless, I still felt well educated on transplantation' ...more
As someone who has no great anatomical knowledge I found a lot of it a little over complicated and not especially interesting.
What was more of a "lay persons" read were some of the true life stories. Obviously, for the majority of transplants, someone has t ...more
I like how this book goes back to the roots of organ transplant and you learn about what the pioneers went though to get organ transplant to what it is today.
I think this was well written and a topic I had not given much ...more
The book is written very well and not to over complicated that you don’t know the medical jargon, you really don’t need too.
It has some history of the transplants which is very interesting.
DR Joshua Mezrich has big decisions to make every time an organ can be used, you can feel that he wants to give it to the person that wants a full life and isn’t going to do anything that would jeopardise that. Would he ...more
I found ‘How death becomes life’ absolutely fascinating. I enjoyed every single page of this book and have learnt much about a topic/procedures that are continually being discussed, are truly life changing and huge for humans and science. The author doesn’t shy away from the difficulties in his work, such as working with the families of the deceased, other surgeons, the harvesting and transplanting of organs, even the challenges of getting from one place to another. There was also mu ...more
This book covers the history of surgeries and transplants and how this affected our practices nowawadays. It also includes many of Doctor Mezrich’s own experiences as a surgeon himself.
The first half of the book mainly focused on the history and progress of transplants. Although it was very informative, I was slowed down by some of the medical terms used. It would have been very helpful if simpler terminology would have been used.
The last parts of the book focuses on ...more
I find books of this style very interesting and so jumped at the chance to read and review this one. The way the book is structured makes it very easy to read and although it delivers quite a bit of history surrounding organ transplant as well as the authors accounts I felt this was a very informative style and layout. However for the average reader this may be a bit to medical and might run the risk of being slightly boring! I liked the way the chapters were set out and also enjoyed reading the ...more
He details the practicalities that surgeons need to consider how they can be called in at any hour of the night or day and clearly explains the processes involved.
This book would be useful to anyone who wants to know a bit more about how organ transplants happen, whether you are personally involved or just curious about this area.
He anonymises information about the actual pa ...more
My only complaint was that made it made me cry on the Tube at one point, but I guess all good books should strive to achieve that!
The first two thirds of the book mainly looked at history and progress with a few of Mezrich's own personal stories sprinkled in. This was very interesting and informative, however I was sometimes bogged down by some of the medical terminology and this hinde ...more