Invasion of the Body: Revolutions in Surgery by Nicholas L. Tilney, Hardcover | Barnes & Noble
Invasion of the Body: Revolutions in Surgery

Invasion of the Body: Revolutions in Surgery

by Nicholas L. Tilney
     
 

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In 1913, the Peter Bent Brigham Hospital in Boston admitted its first patient, Mary Agnes Turner, who suffered from varicose veins in her legs. The surgical treatment she received, under ether anesthesia, was the most advanced available at the time. At the same hospital fifty years later, Nicholas Tilney — then a second- year resident — assisted in the

Overview

In 1913, the Peter Bent Brigham Hospital in Boston admitted its first patient, Mary Agnes Turner, who suffered from varicose veins in her legs. The surgical treatment she received, under ether anesthesia, was the most advanced available at the time. At the same hospital fifty years later, Nicholas Tilney — then a second- year resident — assisted in the repair of a large aortic aneurysm. The cutting-edge diagnostic tools he used to evaluate the patient's condition would soon be eclipsed by yet more sophisticated apparatus, including minimally invasive approaches and state-of- the-art imaging technology, which Tilney would draw on in pioneering organ transplant surgery and becoming one of its most distinguished practitioners. In Invasion of the Body, Tilney tells the story of modern surgery and the revolutions that have transformed the field: anesthesia, prevention of infection, professional standards of competency, pharmaceutical advances, and the present turmoil in medical education and health care reform. Tilney uses as his stage the famous Boston teaching hospital where he completed his residency and went on to practice (now called Brigham and Women's). His cast of characters includes clinicians, support staff, trainees, patients, families, and various applied scientists who push the revolutions forward. While lauding the innovations that have brought surgeons' capabilities to heights undreamed of even a few decades ago, Tilney also previews a challenging future, as new capacities to prolong life and restore health run headlong into unsustainable costs. The authoritative voice he brings to the ancient tradition of surgical invasion will be welcomed by patients, practitioners, and policymakers alike.

Editorial Reviews

Wall Street Journal

Readers will come away with a new appreciation of the scalpel-wielding specialists who have paved the way for heart and organ transplants, cancer removal, and plastic surgery.
— Laura Landro

Nature
Tumours removed, joints replaced, organs transplanted: every weekday, 85,000 non-emergency operations take place in the United States alone. Distinguished U.S. surgeon Nicholas L. Tilney intersperses moments from his own career with a rousing history of the evolution of surgery, breakthrough by breakthrough--from near-butchery to today's fine-tuned procedures. Wading through the gore with aplomb, he covers anaesthesia, pharmaceuticals, asepsis, health-care reform, surgery in war and in peace, facial transplants and more.
Atul Gawande
Dr. Tilney has an eye for fascinating details, shocking stories, and unexpected connections. Invasion of the Body is a riveting account of the astonishing transformation of surgery over the past century.
Wall Street Journal - William Bynum
Always entertaining...Dr. Tilney's analysis of surgical developments during his long career--he graduated from medical school in 1962--is little short of brilliant...Dr. Tilney provides full accounts of both the science and practice of cardiac and transplant surgery, with their backgrounds in basic immunology and the technology of the heart-lung machine. He illustrates his narrative with vivid examples of real operations, including some from his own surgical experience...He has a wonderful capacity to describe what surgeons actually do when they are operating, why they do it and why it sometimes ends in failure...Dr. Tilney is concerned, as every American citizen ought to be, with the chaotic state of American health care. His last chapter contains a great deal of wisdom (and documentation) about the problems of spiraling costs, inequality of access and the pernicious ways in which the market drives decisions about how much and what kind of treatment a patient receives...He has made a shrewd diagnosis of the lack of system in American health care, and politicians would do well to take his critique seriously.
Wall Street Journal - Laura Landro
Readers will come away with a new appreciation of the scalpel-wielding specialists who have paved the way for heart and organ transplants, cancer removal, and plastic surgery.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780674062283
Publisher:
Harvard University Press
Publication date:
09/26/2011
Pages:
384
Sales rank:
1,240,724
Product dimensions:
6.40(w) x 9.20(h) x 1.40(d)

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What People are saying about this

Atul Gawande
Dr. Tilney has an eye for fascinating details, shocking stories, and unexpected connections. Invasion of the Body is a riveting account of the astonishing transformation of surgery over the past century.
Atul Gawande, M.D.

Meet the Author

Nicholas L. Tilney held the posts of Honorary Surgeon, Brigham and Women's Hospital, Boston, and Francis D. Moore Distinguished Professor of Surgery, Harvard Medical School.

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