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Another Day in the Frontal Lobe

A Brain Surgeon Exposes Life on the Inside
Firlik, Katrina (Book - 2006)
Average Rating: 4 stars out of 5.
Another Day in the Frontal Lobe
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Katrina Firlik is a neurosurgeon, one of only two hundred or so women among the alpha males who dominate this high-pressure, high-prestige medical specialty. She is also a superbly gifted writer-witty, insightful, at once deeply humane and refreshingly wry. In Another Day in the Frontal Lobe, Dr. Firlik draws on this rare combination to create a neurosurgeon's Kitchen Confidential-a unique insider's memoir of a fascinating profession. Neurosurgeons are renowned for their big egos and aggressive self-confidence, and Dr. Firlik confirms that timidity is indeed rare in the field. "They're the kids who never lost at musical chairs," she writes. A brain surgeon is not only a highly trained scientist and clinician but also a mechanic who of necessity develops an intimate, hands-on familiarity with the gray matter inside our skulls. It's the balance between cutting-edge medical technology and manual dexterity, between instinct and expertise, that Firlik finds so appealing-and so difficult to master. Firlik recounts how her background as a surgeon's daughter with a strong stomach and a keen interest in the brain led her to this rarefied specialty, and she describes her challenging, atypical trek from medical student to fully qualified surgeon. Among Firlik's more memorable cases: a young roofer who walked into the hospital with a three-inch-long barbed nail driven into his forehead, the result of an accident with his partner's nail gun, and a sweet little seven-year-old boy whose untreated earache had become a raging, potentially fatal infection of the brain lining. From OR theatrics to thorny ethical questions, from the surprisingly primitive tools in a neurosurgeon's kit to glimpses of future techniques like the "brain lift," Firlik cracks open medicine's most prestigious and secretive specialty. Candid, smart, clear-eyed, and unfailingly engaging, Another Day in the Frontal Lobe is a mesmerizing behind-the-scenes glimpse into a world of incredible competition and incalculable rewards. From the Hardcover edition.
Authors: Firlik, Katrina
Title: Another day in the frontal lobe
a brain surgeon exposes life on the inside
Publisher: New York : Random House, c2006
Edition: 1st ed
Characteristics: viii, 271 p. ;,25 cm
Statement of Responsibility: Katrina Firlik
ISBN: 9781400063208
1400063205
Branch Call Number: 617.48 F523a 2006
Bibliography: Includes bibliographical references (p. [269]-271)
Subject Headings: Brain Surgery United States Nervous system Surgery United States Neurosurgeons United States Biography Firlik, Katrina
Topical Term: Brain
Nervous system
Neurosurgeons
LCCN: 2005055260
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Firlik brings honest appraisal of her work with less heroism and more day-to-day problem solving as she moves from intern to doctor. Along the way she removes a nail in a carpenter’s head and allows maggots to clean pus out of an infected brain in this humorous and candid memoir.


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Apr 04, 2014
  • BloomFree rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

Dr Firlik is a likeable, honest and very easy to read writer. To be a neurosurgeon, one has to have above-average confidence and Dr Firlik illustrates a case or two of "over-confidence" -- which is the curse of anyone who is so. I learned new information after reading this book and felt for the most part that I understood her unique perspective. At the end of the book though I felt she became more and more detached and I began to wonder where she was. A lot of books are like this -- great beginnings and ambiguous or lukewarm endings. Those who are interested in pursuing a career in this field will gather useful information on the one-way arduous path to be a neuro-surgeon.

"Most of us can say this about our work: "well, it's not brain surgery." That's not the case for neurosurgeon Katrina Firlik, who regularly gets hands-on with this most precious organ. If you've ever been curious about what we carry within our skulls, or wondered just what it takes to be a neurosurgeon, Firlik's experiences during her seven years of neurosurgery residence training will provide some enlightening answers. In this upbeat memoir, she describes her job as part mechanic and part scientist and explains the tools and skills used to treat brains affected by tumors, strokes, and bullets, among other things." Biography and Memoir January 2014 newsletter http://www.libraryaware.com/996/NewsletterIssues/ViewIssue/f258d59c-5047-4e99-84b0-f4d1d04ff18e?postId=84e6a621-a5ec-40c1-a752-d42f6fa838f2

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Apr 04, 2014
  • BloomFree rated this: 4 stars out of 5.

BloomFree thinks this title is suitable for 19 years and over

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