A MAP OF THE CHILD: A Pediatrician's Tour of the Body

Darshak Sanghavi, Author . Holt $24 (320p) ISBN 978-0-8050-6724-8

The author, a pediatrician and father, presents the complexities of his specialty in this engaging and informative medical narrative. Drawing on case studies, Sanghavi details what can go wrong in each part of a child's body and what medical science can or can't do about it. Sanghavi guides readers through his medical routine: in Japan, working with a team of pediatric cardiologists, he assists in the successful operation on a three-month-old infant with a blockage on the right side of his heart. However, despite the advances of medical technology, some children cannot be saved. Bobby, a five-year-old with cystic fibrosis, undergoes treatment every few months for his damaged lungs, but despite the best efforts of physicians his condition will continue to deteriorate. Throughout these accounts of seriously ill children, the author's strong commitment to his patients and his profession shines through. Although Sanghavi's initial motivation was to increase the reader's awareness of pediatric medicine, he comes to a personal realization that he has to make a leap from seeing "lungs and hearts" to "seeing whole people." Especially moving is a description of the author's feelings of medical helplessness when his father was dying and there were no more treatment options. (Jan.)

Reviewed on: 10/28/2002
Release date: 01/01/2003
Paperback - 305 pages - 978-0-8050-7511-3
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