When breath becomes air wikipedia

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when breath becomes air wikipedia

When Breath Becomes Air by Paul Kalanithi

For readers of Atul Gawande, Andrew Solomon, and Anne Lamott, a profoundly moving, exquisitely observed memoir by a young neurosurgeon faced with a terminal cancer diagnosis who attempts to answer the question What makes a life worth living?

At the age of thirty-six, on the verge of completing a decades worth of training as a neurosurgeon, Paul Kalanithi was diagnosed with stage IV lung cancer. One day he was a doctor treating the dying, and the next he was a patient struggling to live. And just like that, the future he and his wife had imagined evaporated. When Breath Becomes Air chronicles Kalanithis transformation from a naive medical student possessed, as he wrote, by the question of what, given that all organisms die, makes a virtuous and meaningful life into a neurosurgeon at Stanford working in the brain, the most critical place for human identity, and finally into a patient and new father confronting his own mortality.

What makes life worth living in the face of death? What do you do when the future, no longer a ladder toward your goals in life, flattens out into a perpetual present? What does it mean to have a child, to nurture a new life as another fades away? These are some of the questions Kalanithi wrestles with in this profoundly moving, exquisitely observed memoir.

Paul Kalanithi died in March 2015, while working on this book, yet his words live on as a guide and a gift to us all. I began to realize that coming face to face with my own mortality, in a sense, had changed nothing and everything, he wrote. Seven words from Samuel Beckett began to repeat in my head: I cant go on. Ill go on. When Breath Becomes Air is an unforgettable, life-affirming reflection on the challenge of facing death and on the relationship between doctor and patient, from a brilliant writer who became both.
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"When Breath Becomes Air" - What Makes Life Meaningful?

Paul Kalanithi

It is a memoir about his life and illness, battling stage IV metastatic lung cancer. It was posthumously published by Random House on January 12, In his last year of neurosurgical residency at Stanford University , Dr. Paul Kalanithi experiences negative changes in his health. Rapid weight loss, and severe back and chest pains begin to raise concern for him and his wife, Lucy. Paul worries that a possible cause for his symptoms is spinal cancer — unlikely for people in their thirties. However, when X-ray results in a routine medical check-up return looking just fine, his primary care physician and himself attribute the symptoms to aging and work overload.

When Breath Becomes Air is a non-fiction autobiographical book written by Paul Kalanithi. It is a memoir about his life and illness, battling stage IV metastatic.
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Do No Harm: Stories of Life, Death and Brain Surgery review – 'a bloody, splendid, book'

It is a memoir about his life and illness, battling stage IV metastatic lung cancer. - I knew going in this would be a tough read for me, and it was, but aside from that, it is a touching, heartbreaking and most "powerful tale of living with death" knocking at your door. Paul Kalanithi, neurosurgeon and writer was only 37 when he passed away from lung cancer, and besides the loss to his wife and family, such a great loss to the medical profession too.

Please refresh the page and retry. Instead, she has mixed feelings. I have this fantasy where I walk up to him and, even if I just have two seconds, I give him a hard copy of the book with the award nominations printed on the cover. That would be enough. Paul, a highly respected neurosurgeon, died of terminal lung cancer in March

When Dr. He had led a fascinating life and was not about to leave it unchronicled. The bittersweet news is that in the 22 months left to him, Dr. Kalanithi still lives, with enormous power to influence the lives of others even though he is gone. I guarantee that finishing this book and then forgetting about it is simply not an option. There is so much here that lingers, and not just about matters of life and death: One of the most poignant things about Dr.


  1. Niecenrandplot says:

    He was, in his own words, overwhelmed and intoxicated by neurosurgery — feelings which I certainly shared when I started my own neurosurgical training 35 years ago.

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