A reflection on his life and the American medical system, Tales of a Country Surgeon relives the author’s journey from a European childhood of poverty and uncertainty to his training as a doctor, culminating in his eventual success as a surgeon in a quiet town in California.
Gus’s father, a physician himself, faced the threat of Communism in Czernowitz, escaping into the turmoil of Nazi-annexed Austria, where he found work as a country doctor in a small village until just after the end of the war, when the government dismissed him because he was not ethnically Austrian, forcing the family to leave the country. Though they were originally headed for the Gold Coast (now Ghana), the destination at the last minute changed to the United States.
In the US, the family settled in Illinois, where Gus experienced adolescence in 1950s America, eventually realizing his passion for medicine and studying to become a physician. After his service as a military officer, he elected to do a second medical residency to become a surgeon.
Life as a physician, and specifically as a surgeon, has presented Gus with many strange and interesting stories that, along with his personal background, have afforded him ample opportunity to ponder some larger questions in life and within the world of medicine. The vast changes in technology and lifestyles resulting from the 20th century and its two world wars have brought up new practical and ethical concerns in medicine that didn’t exist before. And yet, at its core, being a doctor is the same as it has always been. Taking into consideration his experiences in a field that has dramatically evolved within his own lifetime, Gus looks at the future of medicine: what doctors will be dealing with, and what factors they ought to weigh.
Softcover & E-book
6.0 x 9.0 x 0.75 inches