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Admissions: A Life in Brain Surgery by [Marsh, Henry]
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Admissions: A Life in Brain Surgery Kindle Edition

4.6 out of 5 stars 104 customer reviews

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Sensational...Marsh is curmudgeonly, unflinching, clinical, competitive, often contemptuous and consistently curious. In Admissions he scrubs up just as well the second time around and continues to revel in his joyous candour (THE SUNDAY TIMES)

Superb...a eulogy to surgery and a study of living. I didn't want this book to end. Henry Marsh is part of a growing canon of superb modern medical writers...whose storytelling and prose are transportative...His timing is also impeccable...His sentences, too, feel like works of the finest craftmanship, made with the love that goes into both his woodwork and surgery (Jessamy Calkin DAILY TELEGRAPH)

Marsh is, given his profession, a surprisingly emotional man, likably so. His account of his younger self that threads through this compulsive book is a Bildungsroman in itself. He is also a fine writer and storyteller, and a nuanced observer (Tim Adams OBSERVER)

Do No Harm, candid and tender, was one of the most powerful books written by a doctor...His follow-up book does not disappoint. The maverick is back, even more blunt and irascible, with tales of thrilling, high-wire operations at medicine's unconquered frontier, woven through with personal memoir...Marsh in full spate is quite magnificent...a master of tar-black, deadpan humour (Melanie Reid THE TIMES)

Admissions is a humbling read, in which neurosurgeon Henry Marsh shares fascinating facts learnt during his 40-year career as a brain surgeon. He has a deep humanity that resonates throughout (GOOD HOUSEKEEPING)

An enthralling book, unputdownable...it is an exhilarating, even thrilling read, a glimpse into a world we hope we may never have to enter (THE ARTS DESK)

A truly extraordinary account. Henry Marsh's honesty and simple pragmatism underpin an amazing life of tantalising curiosity and contact with the most complex organ in the known universe. I often wonder about the physical structure of my own brain, about the bits that work and the bits that don't. I wonder at the minutiae, those microscopic fronds, the fragile fabric of jelly that defines me, and here is a man who has seen it, tweaked it, repaired it and yet still doesn't know it. It is tempting to try and find a magic in the mystery, but in fact this is a celebration of the magnificence of the brain (Chris Packham)

Disarmingly frank storytelling. [Marsh] is, in spite of himself, hugely likeable...his reflections on death and dying equal those in Atul Gawande's excellent Being Mortal (ECONOMIST)

Epigramatically balanced and almost brutally candid...Admissions offers a reprise of many of [Do No Harm's] virtues, from the elegance of the writing to the undiminished sense of wonder at the complexity of the brain (Tom Sutcliffe MAIL ON SUNDAY)

[Marsh's] second neurosurgical memoir is transgressive, wry and confessional, sporadically joyful and occasionally doleful. It is in many ways a more revealing work than his bestseller Do No Harm, and the revelations it offers are a good deal more personal...Marsh skilfully articulates the subtleties and frustrations of neurosurgery - but there is a deeper examination of death, and an angrier exposition of the shameful betrayal of the NHS by successive generations of politicians...honesty is abundantly apparent here - a quality as rare and commendable in elite surgeons as one suspects it is in memoirists...It's elegaic but consistently entertaining (Gavin Francis GUARDIAN)

A fascinating memoir...Whether discussing his mistakes, or furious at politically inspired bureaucratic interference in what should be purely medical decisions from the UK to Ukraine via Nepal, Marsh paints a vivid picture of the pressures imposed on a surgeon who is quite literally at the cutting edge of modern medicine (William Hartston DAILY EXPRESS)

[Marsh] is wise and insightful about the balance and confidence, truth and uncertainty faced by doctors...his insights about life, death and professional purpose are irresistible (Hannah Beckerman SUNDAY EXPRESS)

Book Description

A provocative and heartfelt new memoir from the brain surgeon and bestselling author of DO NO HARM

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1159 KB
  • Print Length: 289 pages
  • Page Numbers Source ISBN: 1474603866
  • Publisher: Weidenfeld & Nicolson (4 May 2017)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B01NBQZX91
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars 104 customer reviews
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #1,936 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Henry Marsh is a renowned neurosurgeon and author of the best-selling book ‘Do no Harm’, which related events from a lifetime working in the NHS. That book concentrated on the technical problems of brain surgery and was illustrated by many examples not only of spectacular successes, but also tragic failures, including some that were due to mistakes he freely admitted were due to him. Such frankness is still rare and continues in the present book.

The book covers the period when, after a career spanning 40 years and very close to retirement age, he resigned his NHS post and spent more time on his charity work in Ukraine and Nepal, operating and teaching a new generation of young surgeons. He found the experiences very frustrating. Both countries are poor with underdeveloped health services, and patients rarely have access to appropriate aftercare. He is fully aware that he is sending patients home knowing that he has only “slowed their dying” rather than being able to resolve their problems. There are also vivid descriptions of the beauty of the mountainous Nepalese country contrasted with the squalor of the towns that a visitor finds hard to accept. He deplores the way the beauty of the Himalayas is being ruined by air pollution and rubbish, and the general state of public services.

There was little in the earlier book about Marsh’s private life, except a few ‘flashbacks’ to when he was young and working in lowly positions in hospitals, although he did describe the fears he experienced when other members of own family became ill. In the current book a few more details are revealed: for example his chronic fear of swimming, the short spell he spent in a psychiatric hospital following suicidal thoughts as a young man, and his disastrous first failed marriage.
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I think this is even better than the first one.Mr Marsh covers surgery in the US ,Ukraine and Nepal and the problems and challenges in those countries. He also covers some philosophy about medicine and surgery in this country-past and present, from the unlamented Umties to the present
difficulties of underfunding and lack of staff.Thoroughly recommended.
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I would recommend that you read Henry Marsh 's first book entitled DO NO HARM ....which outlines his career from when he first started in the Medical Profession. Then you will discover what a strong and committed person this guy really is ...He had the benefit of being from a good family his father was a very prominent judge and predioctably Mr Marsh had an excellent education you would think that was that ...however you must read on....

Henry Marsh was a rebel and without any paper qualifications he started out into the big wide world on his own bat working as a nurse in an old folks home in Northern England. He did it the hard way by gradually worked his own way up to where he could shine which was the uncompromising and demanding work of Brain Surgery unsurprisingly he found the time and had the infinite patience to give his tyro's a helping hand for the next generation of Brain Surgeons who followed him in his profession.

He was very critical of the poorly thought out changes brought about by London Government and it's minions on the working of The Health Service which comes as no surprise to such as me ... but the story is his to tell and for me to recommend to you which is what I do unreservedly these two books are an excellent and rewarding read
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I enjoyed this honest sometimes brutal account of this neurosurgeon's experiences working in this country and abroad. It was refreshingly un romanticized and explored the current issues faced by healthcare professionals working in an increasingly 'tick box' and percentage driven NHS. It is sad that perhaps it is only towards the end of one's career that one can afford to speak so openly.
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Writing a second book was always going to be a challenge for Henry Marsh - in that his first book was gripping and would seem to have dealt with most aspects of his career as a neurosurgeon. This new book finds Marsh preparing for retirement and conducting his final NHS operations as well as renovating a lock-keeper's cottage near Oxford and reflecting on his life and to a degree those of his parents. He is working overseas in Ukraine (not happily now) and in Nepal (where there are interesting issues to explore about the role of neurosurgery in such an economy). Marsh is full of rage (which he expresses in a way that he regrets with a nurse during the aftercare of the patient who is he subject of his final UK operation) and outrage (against the NHS of today, bureaucratic targets and processes such as checklists), and also the healthcare systems of other countries.

I found overall that this was slightly less gripping that Marsh's fist book. But it was still full of interest and I would strongly recommend it to others.
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Excellent book, who knew a brain surgeon could come across as just another down to earth, fallible, kind, unpretentious, honest, no nonsense human being. Loved him. I have read other Neurosurgeon's books, namely Proof of Heaven by Eben Alexander and I have to tell you, I didn't believe some of the things he said (he was in deep doo doo with debt and I think he made some stuff up to get book sales). Everything Henry Marsh says in this book is so spot on and straight from the heart you can't not believe what he says he is THAT sincere. He's not here to make fanciful statements to feather his nest he genuinely wants people to know exactly how it feels holding another person's life, wellbeing and quality of life in his hands. He is neither arrogant or thinks he is God, he is just a very talented surgeon doing his damndest to ensure his patients get the best of him. Wonderful man, wonderful book. I also know two people he operated on and they have nothing but nice things to say about him.
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