Saturday, January 10, 2009

Doctors - by Erich Sehgal

Doctors was published by Erich Segal in 1988, and soon jumped onto the # 1 bestseller on the New York Times list. Erich Segal has been known for extensive research for his novels, and the same was true for this one. There was a lot of research done into the life of doctors, starting from the time that they enter medical school and covering their experiences, the type of training they go through, as well as the problems and challenges they face. Somebody reading this novel would get a good idea of what the life of medical students is like, and carry onto the emotions of adult doctors.
The book covers the life of some of the characters who are part of the 1962 Harvard Medical School batch, with a special emphasis on 2 of these.

Doctors by Erich Segal (1988)

The 2 main characters who are the focus of this book, include Barney Livingston and Laura Castellano. These are characters who have grown up as neighbors since they were children, have been very close, very good friends, attended medical school together, and start seeing the harsh elements of life. As medical students and doctors, they come to face an extremely tough education demanding huge amounts of study, face patients who have all kinds of illnesses, many of them tragic. They learn that apparently the medical profession demands that its practitioners should not get personally involved with the problems of their patients, because otherwise they will themselves start to get weak and affected.
The book also takes the lives of other students along with them, such as their brilliant but black colleague Bennett Landsmann, who faces the then huge issue of racism, and ultimately almost falls victim to it. They come face to face shocking problems in the medical fraternity such as misdiagnosis, colleagues who are not competent or indulge in conduct that offends them. The book traces their lives to the point where they have each had their relationships, but ultimately realize that eventually they are made for each other. The book is gripping, and is certainly worth reading.

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