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Science in the headlines, Rae Varcoe

The Edge of Life: Controversies and Challenges in Human Health Mike Berridge BWB Texts, $15.00, ISBN 9780909321339 BWB Texts is publishing a series of “Short books on big topics by great New Zealand writers” each month. They are edited by

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Delivery suite, Rae Varcoe

The Rise and Fall of National Women’s Hospital
Linda Bryder
Auckland University Press
ISBN 9781869408091

Many readers will be familiar with the furore which arose when Linda Bryder‘s A History of the ‘Unfortunate Experiment’ at National Women’s Hospital (2009) concluded that Herb Green’s management of pre-cancerous lesions of the cervix was not an experiment and that Dame Sylvia Cartwright was in error. Bryder’s view was that Green’s non-interventional management of such cervical abnormalities was in line with that of other academic units overseas and, as the patients were not randomised, but treated on a case-by-case basis, the treatment was not experimental. This continues to be an area of vigorous debate (see letters in the New Zealand Listener for 19 and 26 April 2014). The Cartwright Enquiry book was a diversion from the research and construction of this comprehensive history of National Women’s Hospital for which Bryder received a Marsden Fund grant in 2003.

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Diagnostic criteria, Rae Varcoe

Being a Doctor: Understanding Medical Practice Hamish Wilson and Wayne Cunningham Otago University Press, $35.00, ISBN 9781877578366 I have been a doctor for 45 years. How I wish that this volume had been available 46 years ago. I emerged from

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Medical check-up, Rae Varcoe

The Good Doctor: What Patients Want  Ron Paterson   Auckland University Press, $40.00,  ISBN 9781869405922 Neither title nor subtitle accurately reflects the thrust of this book. It is less about how we might distinguish the good doctor (and define what

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Orchids in socks, Rae Varcoe

Quarantine! Protecting New Zealand at the Border  Gavin McLean and Tim Shoebridge Otago University Press, $45.00, ISBN 9781877372827   The word quarantine derives from the Italian for 40: the number of days deemed appropriate to seclude a vessel known to

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Every breath you take, Rae Varcoe

Adverse Reactions: The Fenoterol Story Neil Pearce Auckland University Press, $40.00,  ISBN 9781869403744 At the outset I confess to a personal interest in this story. I am a physician (some physicians are among the villains of this piece), and I

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Not to be sneezed at, Rae Varcoe

Black November: The 1918 Influenza Pandemic in New Zealand Geoffrey W Rice University of Canterbury Press, $39.95, ISBN 1877257354 Survive Bird Flu and Other Disasters Bronwen King Hazard Press, $14.99, ISBN 1877393185 This week’s papers contain news of progress in

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Poem — Rae Varcoe

When considering euthanasia   First, you should own a wise physician friend, a young one, the kind who could find a needle in a brainstorm. If not, rent one. If you wish, consult a minister or priest. (For myself, I

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Poem — Rae Varcoe

MERCY, MATER, MERCY you are scheduled for Thursday for your operation on Wednesday [2-3 p.m.] report to reception a deposit of $200 for each admission day is required credit cards suffice here, but cash or cheque is nicer on Wednesday

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