What I’ve Learned from You: The Lessons of Life Taught to a Doctor by His Patients

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We live in a world in which medical care seems more automated and less human. Doctors are busy, rushing, trying to care for all of their patients. Dr. Scott Kelly brings a refreshing perspective of medicine in which a doctor takes time to sit and talk with his patients, to really listen to what they have to say. Kelly brings us back to the original focus of medicine: the doctor and the patient together.

Kelly begins keeping a journal during his third year of medical school. He learns much from his textbooks, but he learns the most from his patients. An attending physician tells his students, “Listen to your patients, young doctors, and they will tell you what is wrong with them.”

It may seem as if the patients in a waiting room are simply there for a physical examination, but they are waiting, nearly bursting, with a need to communicate what is inside them, not simply organs and tissues, but their passions, fears, and souls. One patient, Bernie, asks Dr. Kelly if he believes in the mind-body connection. This book is the realization of that connection. You cannot treat a patient’s symptoms without treating the whole person.

When Dr. Kelly is a student, he sees a patient who had cut his leg badly, Walter, a former surgeon who retired due to Parkinson’s disease. Walter asks Dr. Kelly to suture him without Kelly’s attending physician. After getting permission, Dr. Kelly sutures the wound under Walter’s direction. Dr. Kelly and his attending could simply treat Walter’s wound, but instead they give him an opportunity to be a part of his healing, even to direct it. In this way, both Walter and his wound heal together.

This book is filled with gems that will not only inspire a doctor in his or her own practice, but will inspire all of us to integrate these lessons into our own lives. For example, his patient, Sean, values being with his children more than his work. “The key is to leave the work at the office…Turn off the television. Put down the newspaper. Get down on the floor, to your children’s level, and absorb yourself in their world…and be present—and not just in body. Give them your mind and your heart.” Dr. Kelly says, “when I follow his advice, I am never disappointed.”


Reviewed By:

Author Scott Kelly
Star Count 5/5
Format Hard
Page Count 204 pages
Publisher Art Heals Media, LLC
Publish Date 27-Mar-2015
ISBN 9780991274321
Amazon Buy this Book
Issue June 2015
Category Biographies & Memoirs
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