What Doctors Don’t Know

Doctors, dressed up in one professional costume or another, have been in busy practice since the earliest records of every culture on earth. It is hard to think of a more dependable or enduring occupation, harder still to imagine any future events leading to its extinction. Other trades—goldsmithing, embalming, cathedral …

‘Unacceptable Damage’

The hardest of all tasks for the military people who are occupationally obliged to make plans for wars still to come must be to keep a comprehensive up-to-date list of guesses about what the other side might, in one circumstance or another, do. Prudence requires that all sorts of possibilities …

The Big C

When I was a medical student, long ago in the mid-1930s, the disease to worry about the most was tuberculosis. It was all around. Anyone could catch it, at any time, from infancy to old age, and there was really nothing much to be done about it. You might survive …

Rx for Illich

As a physician, I’ve had a hard time with Medical Nemesis, but not, as you might be thinking, because of wincing or hurt feelings at all the harsh things Ivan Illich wants to say about contemporary medicine. Indeed, most of his arguments, taken singly, are not all that bad, or …