How Doctors Think
By Jerome Groopman
(Houghton Mifflin Harcourt, Hardcover, 9780618610037, 320pp.)
Publication Date: January 2007
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On average, a physician will interrupt a patient describing her symptoms within eighteen seconds. In that short time, many doctors decide on the likely diagnosis and best treatment. Often, decisions made this way are correct, but at crucial moments they can also be wrong -- with catastrophic consequences. In this myth-shattering book, Jerome Groopman pinpoints the forces and thought processes behind the decisions doctors make. Groopman explores why doctors err and shows when and how they can -- with our help -- avoid snap judgments, embrace uncertainty, communicate effectively, and deploy other skills that can profoundly impact our health. This book is the first to describe in detail the warning signs of erroneous medical thinking and reveal how new technologies may actually hinder accurate diagnoses. How Doctors Think offers direct, intelligent questions patients can ask their doctors to help them get back on track.
Groopman draws on a wealth of research, extensive interviews with some of the country’s best doctors, and his own experiences as a doctor and as a patient. He has learned many of the lessons in this book the hard way, from his own mistakes and from errors his doctors made in treating his own debilitating medical problems.
How Doctors Think reveals a profound new view of twenty-first-century medical practice, giving doctors and patients the vital information they need to make better judgments together.
Jerome Groopman, M.D., holds the Dina and Raphael Recanati Chair of Medicine at Harvard Medical School and is chief of experimental medicine at Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center in Boston. A staff writer for The New Yorker, he is the author of How Doctors Think, The Anatomy of Hope, Second Opinions, The Measure of Our Days, and other books.
Could reading literature or writing memoirs help doctors be better caregivers? Dr. Jerome Groopman, author of How Doctors Think, and Nellie Hermann, creative director of Columbia University's narrative medicine program, discuss what stories might mean for the future of medical education and practice. More at NPR.org
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"Dr. Jerome Groopman is bringing out his most essential book yet, HOW DOCTORS THINK." Boston Phoenix
"A highly pleasurable must-read." Kirkus Reviews, Starred
Every reflective doctor will learn from this book...every prospective patient will find thoughtful advice for communicating successfully Publishers Weekly, Starred
A book to restore faith in an often-resented profession, well enough written to warrant its quarter-million first printing.
A cogent analysis of all the wrong ways his fellow practitioners are trained to appraoch the patients they treat.
A sage, humane prescription for medical practitioners and the people who depend of them. O, The Oprah Magazine
Splendid and courageous Groopman lifts the veil on the most taboo topic the pervasive nature of misdiagnosis.” -- Ron Chernow, author of ALEXANDER HAMILTON, TITAN, and THE HOUSE OF MORGAN
Groopman has written a unique, important and wonderful book You’ll never look at your own doctor in the same way again.” -- Steven D. Levitt and Stephen J. Dubner, authors of FREAKONOMICS