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"Pickwickian" and Other Stories of Intensive Care: Medical and Ethical Challenges in the ICU

[+] Article and Author Information

Martin Lawrence. . 246 pages. Cleveland: : Lakeside Press; ; 1991.. $10.95.


Ann Intern Med. 1992;116(11):960. doi:10.7326/0003-4819-116-11-960_2
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Readers of the literature of medicine who are accustomed to Hilfiker's questioning introspection, Stone's robust poetry, and Selzer's literary masterwork may be startled by Martin's clinical, matter-of-fact tone. This collection of anecdotes, drawn from his experience in a medical intensive care unit, targets a slightly different audience. The sensationalistic cover and introduction ("young accountant who slept in a coma—for six months!") reads like the front page of a supermarket tabloid and highlights its intended readership: the lay public. The stories span a wide spectrum of disorders, including cocaine abuse, alcoholism, the acquired immunodeficiency syndrome, and the Guillain-Barre syndrome. Martin explains

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