White Coat: Becoming A Doctor At Harvard Medical School By Ellen Lerner Rothman

Ellen Lerner Rothman É 2 Read

Rothman is by far one of the worst writers I’ve read. Towards the end I had to force myself through due to her not being able to express herself beyond the banal. I was expecting some insight, some thought, but what I got was a dry explanation of the first two years of medical school.

That is not to say there is no worth in reading her book – I just can’t imagine they couldn’t get anyone else from Harvard Medical to write a memoir. What drove me to finish this book was to understand how others experience the same situations we all go through as medical students: the dawning of the white coat, the first patient, the difficult patient, uncertainty, etc. Albeit, her explanation was lacking, it did give me a perspective at how the experience at a top-notch institution such as Harvard is not much different than mine. I think it’s this shared experience that tightens the fraternity amongst physicians. This book made that ever more apparent.
White Coat: Becoming A Doctor At Harvard Medical School This memoir was a delightful surprise and I am happy to say that it exceeded my expectations, especially after reading some of the reviews posted here on Goodreads. While not the most gifted writer, Rothman still manages to vividly illustrate her medical school journey. I felt as though I was right there in the room with her as she examined her patients and learned various new procedures. One of the things I liked most about this novel was that it not only chronologically detailed her time in medical school (classes, exams, studying, and hospital rounds) but it also included bits and pieces of her life outside of school (managing friendships, relationships, etc), as well as, her hopes and fears of becoming a doctor. I was so engrossed in Rothman's story that I actually carried her book around with me and pulled it out whenever I had time to read -- even if only for a couple of minutes (ex: waiting in line at a store or for a movie to start in the movie theater). A thoroughly intriguing and enjoyable read, I highly recommend this to anyone with an interest in medicine or anyone who plans to attend medical school. White Coat: Becoming A Doctor At Harvard Medical School This was one of the better medical autobiographies I've read lately, plus it was a fast read with short chapters, which lent itself well to reading in my car before work.
A lot of books I read focus on the gross anatomy course of medical school or a career-long retrospective. Rothman chose to primarily illustrate her later years in medical school and what it was like doing the rotations through various specialties. Readers get a very intimate picture of her thoughts and feelings during the process because she was writing the book during her time in medical school, so everything was fresh in her mind. At times I felt I was there with her, holding the dying patients' hands or trying to figure out how to penetrate the fog of mental illness in a psychatric patient.
Definitely well worth the read, and I would gladly read a follow-up if she hs written one. White Coat: Becoming A Doctor At Harvard Medical School I enjoyed the story but the writing was a little awkward. Dr. Rothman kept introducing ideas or setting a scene and then she never circled back to close the loop and explain why she had set it up... White Coat: Becoming A Doctor At Harvard Medical School This was written by my genius cousin-- a fabulous book White Coat: Becoming A Doctor At Harvard Medical School


An enjoyable and informative read about the struggles and joys of medical school...i highly recommend this to med students! Thanks for sharing your experiences Dr Rothman : ) White Coat: Becoming A Doctor At Harvard Medical School I don't agree with the reviewers who are complaining about the author's poor writing. She is probably about as good or better than the average doctor. A lot of reviewers complain that cops are bad writers, electrical engineers are bad writers, and dog groomers are bad writers. Then they should only read books that are written by writers. I happen to like books that are written by insiders and that sometimes means that the writing isn't going to be perfect. It is not going to be in a writer's voice. It is going to sound like it came from a doctor, a cop, an electrical engineer, or a dog groomer. So be it. Writers are never really going to be anything but writers and their information (except maybe about writing) is always going to be second-hand.

Having said that, the author's dispassion is disturbing and I'm really glad that she's not my doctor. I have several doctors who show every sign of being human and that's the way I like them.

One statement that made me sit up and take notice was made when the author was learning how to do a needle biopsy and the doctor instructing her told her (and, as far as I know, she still believes) that ethyl chloride is not necessary because it does absolutely nothing and is used entirely for placebo effect. I'd certainly pay money to be there when they perform a needle biopsy on a doctor without anesthesia.

In another chapter, a patient they don't particularly like is suffering from dysphagia and has complained when he can't swallow chopped carrots (cooked is usually OK) and rice (which I personally have a lot of trouble swallowing). He asks for applesauce (which is fine) and soup (some are OK, some are not) and is just told that liquids are forbidden and it's carrots and rice or nothing. The lesson is: have someone prepared to smuggle you food. (Yes, I know it's against the rules. Too damned bad.)

One chapter I found particularly frightening was about another patient who was disliked. Hospital staff reacted by totally ignoring her complaints of pain (from a ruptured spleen and a broken pelvis) and shunned her until she very nearly died. After rescuing her at the very last minute from a medical crisis caused by their own negligence, the medical staff (including the author) expected her to be grateful. The lesson is: If you aren't all lolly-pops and rainbows when you are sick, it could get you killed.

After the chapter on ob-gyn I wonder why I am still reading this.

White Coat: Becoming A Doctor At Harvard Medical School Good book. I'm very curious about the medical world and the process it takes to become a dr. Dr. Rothman attended Harvard which is an impressive title in its own right, but add a doctorate to your diploma and it gets even more intense. Her journey was far from easy, and the pressures of being a dr all day, every day, caused many to drop out. Not to mention the big paycheck doesn't come until much, much later. As someone who finds benefits in both holistic and western medicine, I would have a hard time simply with the politics of being a western medicine dr. The drug racket alone makes me furious. At least Dr. Rothman showed true compassion and humanity in her journey. I feel many drs lack a pure simple component: human kindness. In a society where doctors are pushed to fit in as many patients as they can within clinic hours: how many go undiagnosed, untreated, misdiagnosed and just feeling like their 15 minutes did nothing but extract a very large bill and no true answers? Overall, I felt this was a great account of what it takes to be a dr, and a good one at that. No matter your personal experiences with doctors ( mine haven't been the greatest so they jade my viewpoints) this is something to be aware of and most importantly, Dr. Rothman shatters the idea that doctors ( because of the white coat they wear) are not gods of knowledge. They struggle, they mess up, they don't always have the correct answer. Time and hard work definitely help in the process, and simply caring for human life goes a long way too. White Coat: Becoming A Doctor At Harvard Medical School One of the reasons that a series like Twilight or Harry Potter becomes popular is because people want it to be real. Readers think I wish I were at Hogwarts or I wish Edward loved ME! I felt that way a lot of the time when I was reading White Coat. I want to be Ellen. I want her experiences and her newly-acquired knowledge. I want her accomplishment and her charmed life: Yale to Harvard to book deal to top-choice residency.
That said, she's not a good writer at all. I thought her stubborn descriptions of every character's hair and eye color were juvenile. The entire White Coat theme seemed forced and shallow. I was annoyed by her self-deprecation because it rang false again and again. I didn't care at all about her insecurities and I cared even less about her relationship with her boyfriend, then fiancé, then husband. I wish she had spent more energy describing her patients' problems and treatments. Overall, I thought the tone was condescending; everything seemed ridiculously dumbed-down for the non-medical reader. But really, why would someone who doesn't know what cardiopulmonary resuscitation is bother to read an entire book about Medical School?
I enjoyed this book because I wanted an insider's view of Medical School, and because I love reading about all things medical. But I couldn't let go of the fact that she didn't get this book deal because of her writing talents. Surely there has been at least one graduate of HMS who could write a better memoir than this.
But then, maybe I'm just being so harsh because I'm jealous. Probably. White Coat: Becoming A Doctor At Harvard Medical School
Harvard Medical School is considered one of the best Medical schools in the world. Dr. Ellen Lerner Rothman describes about the struggles and triumphs she had in her Medical School. She tries to discuss about many important topics like AIDS and assisted suicide. This is a must-read book if you are a Medical student. White Coat: Becoming A Doctor At Harvard Medical School

In White Coat, Ellen Rothman offers a vivid account of her four years at one of the best medical schools in the country, and opens the infamously closed door between patient and doctor. Touching on today's most important medical issues -- such as HMOs, AIDS, and assisted suicide -- the author navigates her way through despair, exhilaration, and a lot of exhaustion in Harvard's classrooms and Boston's hospitals to earn the indisputable title to which we entrust our lives.

With a thoughtful, candid voice, Rothman writes about a wide range of experiences -- from a dream about holding the hand of a cadaver she had dissected to the acute embarrassment she felt when asking patients about their sexual histories. She shares her horror at treating a patient with a flesh-eating skin infection, the anxiety of being pimped by doctors for information (when doctors quiz students on anatomy and medicine), as well as the ultimate reward of making the transformation and of earning a doctor's white coat.

For readers of Perri Klass, Richard Selzer, and the millions of fans of ER, White Coat is a fascinating account of one woman's journey through school and into the high-stakes drama of the medical world. White Coat: Becoming A Doctor At Harvard Medical School