The Memoir

The Flame Broiled Doctor: From Boyhood to Burnout in Medicine



Now available in trade paperback from Amazon CreateSpace, or for Kindle and the Kindle app from Amazon!

CANADIAN SHOPPERS: Some people have had difficulty getting the paperback version through CreateSpace, or are concerned about the volatile exchange rate. As a solution to the problem, I'm obtaining a supply of books for direct mailing within Canada. E-mail me with your address for ordering and a shipping cost estimate. If you have your own account with a courier, I'm more than happy to ship the book that way.

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Ever since he was a child, Frank wanted to get into med school, or at least that’s what he was raised to believe. He was bright, he was motivated, and seemed destined to be the first doctor in his family. One morning in late August, after every offer and every wait list in Canada had been exhausted, Frank got the “call” to enter medicine.

In hindsight, that call might very well have been a wrong number.

The Flame Broiled Doctor: From Boyhood to Burnout in Medicine is a warts-and-all memoir of a career in medicine cut short by frustration, cynicism, and burnout:
  • The heady, angst-ridden experience of medical school, where Frank never found his footing but landed himself a wife 
  • The demoralizing years of residency, made palatable by reading Tarot cards for cash
  • The mistake-filled early days in practice, and stories from the ER too outrageous to be forgotten
  • The politically stained world of Public Heath, and its goody-two-shoes culture juxtaposed with down-and-dirty sexual health clinics
  • And the hilarious but disheartening experience of caring for the poor and forgotten among us
More than the stories, though, the memoir is an authentic portrayal of life as a doctor, and the insidious effect of burnout on one’s life and one’s practice. What causes a professional to walk away – twice – at the outset of the prime of his life? What’s it like for a doctor to deal with chronic pain and a health crisis, to take a turn in the patient’s chair? To maintain empathy for the patient while sparing little for himself? To weigh sound clinical judgement against the suffering of the patient? To keep a marriage intact while falling apart as a person?

Death, faith, sex, urinary catheters…nothing is sacred and nothing is safe. The memoir is medicine as it so often truly is, from the highest (drug-induced) highs to the deepest (and most irritable) bowels. You’ll never think of doctors in quite the same way.

"...an excellent read for anyone in medicine or thinking of pursuing a career in it...a must-read before starting med school." - DocBastard, trauma surgeon and medical writer @ The Daily Beast

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