Customer Reviews for

Better: A Surgeon's Notes on Performance

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  • Anonymous

    Posted March 24, 2012

    I Also Recommend:

    Although not quite as good as Complications, Gawande's book &quo

    Although not quite as good as Complications, Gawande's book "Better" is a worthwhile read. This collection of essays is an interesting read for anyone interested in the psyche of a doctor. I enjoyed it, and read it in just a few days. As a physician myself, I find his writing to be engaging, honest, and insightful. Overall, one of the better books about medicine that I've read.
    If you like this one, I recommend that you read Complications, as well as Dr. Michael Collins' book "Hot Lights Cold Steel" and Dr. Anthony Youn's book "In Stitches." These are some of my favorite medical non-fiction, and you won't be disappointed!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted November 24, 2010

    Book Review for Better

    Atul Gawande's Better is not only written for medical students and doctors but also for everyday citizens. Even though its setting revolves around hospitals, clinics, medical students, doctors, and nurses, many of the book's purpose and examples can be applied to an average student or citizen and taken to improve their lives. Better is divided into three sections which include diligence, doing right, and ingenuity. Each of these sections is divided into several chapters that contain many example and experiences that Gawande describes. The writing style and tone is very optimistic and didactic with many adages and quotes that are aimed to improve people's lives. Even though the book contains many medical terms, they are defined, and make the writing easy to understand. Better not only contains many scenes in U.S. hospitals, emergency rooms, and surgical rooms, but also in jails and foreign countries. Gawande describes his visit to India and the Middle East, mainly in Iraq and Afghanistan. In these countries, many of the unfortunate village citizens in India are described, and the innocent civilians in the Middle East and the U.S. combat troops and army are also described. The book also contains efforts to eradicate diseases and epidemics like Polio and AIDS and also describes famous agencies like WHO which are responsible for the attempts to eradicate these diseases. The main message of Better is to teach ordinary people to persevere and be dedicated to their work. Through many of the examples in the book, the reader can take these examples and apply them to every day incidents that teach him or her to be a better person. Gawande also stresses working together diligently which is found in the chapter about eradicating polio but later in the book, Gawande stresses that people should be individual and not always fall in the "bell curve". The overall impact of the book is to make ordinary citizens better people who are dedicated to helping others and improving themselves.

    1 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted January 15, 2012

    One of my favorite books ever

    Atul Gawande's Better is engrossing, inspiring, demoralizing, eye-opening, and informative. Highly readable, each chapter can stand alone as a brief but detailed and personalized account of someone trying to do something "better:" reduce the spread of hospital-borne disease; eradicatre polio worldwide and/or in obscure, unmapped Asian villages; improve survival rates of soldiers grievously wounded in the field; run a small family practice in the face of insurance and regulatory requirements. "The Bell Curve," a chapter on the widely disparate results among top-flight hospitals treating and managing cystic fibrosis, was astonishing. I've given this book to all of my managers and many of my friendss in the hopes of inspiring them, too, to try for "better."

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted April 12, 2010

    Will make you rethink your own approach to your profession - whatever it is

    Atul Gawande's thoughtful, incisive work is always a pleasure to read, but perhaps never moreso than when readers can take his observations and apply them to their own lives. 'Better' will make you re-examine how you go about the practice of your own profession - whatever it is - and leave you striving to do it better. If you have enjoyed Gawande's New Yorker pieces, you will be glad for the opportunity to enjoy a longer work, but know that it flies by quickly. Plan on having 'Complications' or 'The Checklist Manifesto' nearby for when you finish, as you'll surely be left wanting more.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted October 28, 2009

    more from this reviewer

    Great book!

    Better was a really good book, I enjoyed reading it. Atul gives good information and stories. I found the stories to be interesting and they kept me intrigued with the book. The facts in the book all seem to be true because he would get his information from the one person. I would recommend this book to anyone and would find it to be a really great book.

    0 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted July 4, 2009

    A peek into the secretly held problems of the medical facilities

    This was a surprisingly open and candid view of what we all suspect and some know. Perhaps the beginning of a honest and frank discussion of what needs so desperately to be changed.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 22, 2008

    Simplistic Yet Eye Opening

    ¿Better¿ brings to the surface a raw combination of human emotions as the author takes us through various stories of sadness and hope. It is a delightful and easy read that poignantly reminds us all that we all can and need to perform better.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 12, 2007

    Expand your horizons, fascinating reading.

    So much information in only 273 pages. I was particulaly interested in the Cystic Fibrosis section where a particular treatment center had results which extended the life expectancy of CF patients well above the other CF treatment centers.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 15, 2007

    Another learning experience

    Just finished how Doctor's think which was also a good learning experience. This book 'Better' went into more depth and I enjoyed reading and learning. Especially a simple thing like the importance of washing your hands and properly and the impact of doing so.

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    Posted June 29, 2012

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