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Open heart: a cardiac surgeon's stories of life and death on the operating table

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In gripping prose, one of the world's leading cardiac surgeons lays bare both the wonder and the horror of a life spent a heartbeat away from death

When Stephen Westaby witnessed a patient die on the table during open-heart surgery for the first time, he was struck by the quiet, determined way the surgeons walked away. As he soon understood, this detachment is a crucial survival strategy in a profession where death is only a heartbeat away. In Open Heart, Westaby reflects on over 11,000 surgeries, showing us why the procedures have never become routine and will never be. With astonishing compassion, he recounts harrowing and sometimes hopeful stories from his operating room: we meet a pulseless man who lives with an electric heart pump, an expecting mother who refuses surgery unless the doctors let her pregnancy reach full term, and a baby who gets a heart transplant-only to die once it's in place.

For readers of Atul Gawande's Being Mortal and of Henry Marsh's Do No Harm, Open Heart offers a soul-baring account of a life spent in constant confrontation with death.

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ISBN:
9780465094837
9781478974895
9781541698093
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Grouping Information

Grouped Work ID18734296-8aac-136c-9625-407fa54cce2f
Grouping Titleopen heart a cardiac surgeons stories of life and death on the operating table
Grouping Authorstephen westaby
Grouping Categorybook
Grouping LanguageEnglish (eng)
Last Grouping Update2021-03-01 02:27:03AM
Last Indexed2021-03-01 02:56:10AM
Novelist Primary ISBN9780465094837

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display_description

In gripping prose, one of the world's leading cardiac surgeons lays bare both the wonder and the horror of a life spent a heartbeat away from death


When Stephen Westaby witnessed a patient die on the table during open-heart surgery for the first time, he was struck by the quiet, determined way the surgeons walked away. As he soon understood, this detachment is a crucial survival strategy in a profession where death is only a heartbeat away. In Open Heart, Westaby reflects on over 11,000 surgeries, showing us why the procedures have never become routine and will never be. With astonishing compassion, he recounts harrowing and sometimes hopeful stories from his operating room: we meet a pulseless man who lives with an electric heart pump, an expecting mother who refuses surgery unless the doctors let her pregnancy reach full term, and a baby who gets a heart transplant-only to die once it's in place.


For readers of Atul Gawande's Being Mortal and of Henry Marsh's Do No Harm, Open Heart offers a soul-baring account of a life spent in constant confrontation with death.

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subject_facetHeart -- Surgery -- Anecdotes
Heart surgeons -- United States -- Biography
Westaby, Stephen
title_displayOpen heart : a cardiac surgeon's stories of life and death on the operating table
title_fullOpen Heart A Cardiac Surgeon's Stories of Life and Death on the Operating Table
Open heart : a cardiac surgeon's stories of life and death on the operating table / Stephen Westaby
title_shortOpen heart
title_suba cardiac surgeon's stories of life and death on the operating table
topic_facetHeart
Heart surgeons
Medical
Nonfiction
Surgery
Westaby, Stephen