Harvey Cushing

Harvey Cushing : A Life in Surgery

4.29 (104 ratings by Goodreads)
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Harvey Cushing (1869-1939) was the founder of brain surgery, an enormous surgical advance. Working at Johns Hopkins Hospital in the early years of the twentieth century, Cushing developed the techniques that enabled surgeons to open the skull, expose the brain, and attack tumors, with a high probability of helping rather than harming patients. Cushing became world famous as the first neurosurgeon, and was one of the first American medical leaders to attract visitors and students from abroad. Moving to Harvard and the Peter Bent Brigham Hospital, Cushing in the 1920s made the apparently miraculous in surgery an every-day reality, as he and his team compiled an astonishing record of treating more than two thousand tumors. Cushing's techniques also enabled him to become the world's leading expert in the pituitary gland, and thus one of the pioneers in endocrinology, who has given his name to "Cushing's syndrome" and "Cushing's disease." In his spare time Cushing wrote elegant medical essays, won a Pulitzer Prize for his massive biography of William Osler, and amassed a great collection of rare medical books, which are now the basis of the Medical Historical Library at his alma mater, Yale. Harvey Cushing: A Life in Surgery is the first biography of Cushing to be published in fifty years. Drawing on new collections of intimate personal and family papers, diaries and patient records Michael Bliss re-creates both Cushing's professional and, for the first time, his personal life in remarkable detail.show more

Product details

  • Hardback | 608 pages
  • 157.5 x 236.2 x 50.8mm | 1,043.27g
  • Oxford University Press Inc
  • New York, United States
  • English
  • 32 pp black & white plates
  • 0195169891
  • 9780195169898

Review quote

This book is a must for all students of early twentieth-century America, and not simply those interested in the making of modern surgery. This is an extremely rich biography, not least because of the fantastic array of letters that Bliss has been able to draw on. Bulletin of the History of Medicine,Vol 81, ... It is beautifully written and illustrated, a pleasure to read, and paints Cushing 'warts and all'. A must for anyone with an interest in the development of our profession and with the life of this extraordinary man. British Journal of Hospital Medicine This is required reading for any neurosurgeon and neurointensivist and any jobbing physician involved with very sick patients. This scholarly book is insightful and contains a remarkable analysis of a complex personality admired by so many. Neurocritical Care, Vol 4, No 1show more

Table of contents

Preface; Opening: The Surgeon and the General; 1. Western Reserve: The Cushings of Cleveland; 2. Making a Yale Man; 3. Making a Harvard Doctor; 4. Making an American Surgeon; 5. A Window on the Brain; 6. Opening the Closed Box: The Birth of Neurosurgery; 7. The Bottom of the Box: Interrogating the Pituitary; 8. Adieu the Simple Life; 9. Adieu America: Cushing Goes to War; 10. A Head Surgeon at Passchendaele; 11. Fathers and Sons; 12. Johnson and Boswells: Chief and Harem; 13. Sprinting to the Tape; 14. Regius Professor at Yale; Closing: Inheritance and Memoryshow more

About Michael Bliss

Michael Bliss holds the prestigious rank of University Professor at the University of Toronto. He has written numerous prize-winning books in medical history, including The Discovery of Insulin and William Osler: A Life in Medicine. One of Canada's most distinguished historians, he has received the Order of Canada and an honorary Fellowship in the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada, and is a Fellow of the Royal Society of Canada.show more

Rating details

104 ratings
4.29 out of 5 stars
5 44% (46)
4 47% (49)
3 5% (5)
2 2% (2)
1 2% (2)
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