By Dr. Peter A. Selwyn M.D., Visit Amazon's Peter A. Selwyn Page, search results, Learn about Author Central, Peter A. Selwyn,
This can be a memoir of the 1st decade of the AIDS epidemic within the Bronx, a physician's firsthand account of the emergence of an outbreak and the lives that it touched. it's also an exploration of the way the doctor used to be himself reworked via his adventure with those sufferers. Dr Peter Selwyn, now a widely known researcher and clinician within the zone of HIV and drug abuse, got here to Montefiore clinical middle within the Bronx as a scientific intern in June 1981. He remained there for ten years, taking care of sufferers with AIDS. in the course of that very same span he married and have become a father. Absorbed within the discomfort and losses of his sufferers and their households, Dr Selwyn eventually stated the grief he had carried for many years following the unexpected loss of life (and obvious suicide) of his father whilst the writer was once an little one. He discovered that, like AIDS, suicide stigmatizes either those that die and those that live on. Surrounded via younger sufferers who have been demise, he understood what it intended to have a father and to be one. For him, it used to be a strategy of therapeutic in the course of the epidemic. His tale may help us see AIDS (and any life-threatening disease) as a chance to head via our personal worry, discomfort and darkness and to return out at the different facet. spotting the darkness and passing via it, observes Dr Selwyn, is a prerequisite for somebody looking to be an efficient caregiver, even if specialist or own. it's a procedure that could educate us tips on how to accompany sufferers or household via ailment and to witness and relive their affliction as they method loss of life. this can be a tale of loss, discovery and coming to phrases with the previous, a narrative with a message for someone facing the demanding situations of dwelling, demise and being human.
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Additional info for Surviving the Fall: The Personal Journey of an AIDS Doctor
This immersion in medical training, and in the lives and cultures of the people in this Bronx community, was very gratifying. I often felt a sense of privilege and wonder at being brought into people's lives, being able to witness and be part of their dramas, struggles, and life experiences. I began to appreciate the richness that lies beneath the surface of even the most seemingly ordinary lives, something that I had not experienced in other settings. I came to love my patients and was gratified by their loyalty to me as well.
Page 1 1 Immersion What struck me most in the beginning were all the fathers dying young. First in ones and twos, then in swelling numbers, the succession of thirty-five-year-olds came into the hospital, struggled briefly, and died. They succumbed to pneumonia or other infections, or else simply wasted away, while their wives and small children came and went, walking in disbelief through white-glared hospital corridors. Suddenly and without precedent, young families were being cruelly and abruptly destroyed, with no apparent logic or warning.
The Pinochet coup had occurred in fall 1973, culminating in the death of the elected President Salvador Allende. This event had had a great impact on me and my circle of friends at Swarthmore, as a chilling example of how truth and justice did not always prevail in the real world. As I lay there on the bed reading, I was suddenly overwhelmed by all the cruelty and meanness in the world: Page 9 I felt very vulnerable, like a little boy lost in a hostile and dangerous adult world. I did not relate this feeling to my own personal history, to the fact that I had grown up without a father; rather, I experienced it as a nonspecific feeling of rootlessness, a vaguely sick feeling of being adrift in the world, needing something to protect me from the threats that lurked everywhere in this menacing, grown-up environment.
Surviving the Fall: The Personal Journey of an AIDS Doctor by Dr. Peter A. Selwyn M.D., Visit Amazon's Peter A. Selwyn Page, search results, Learn about Author Central, Peter A. Selwyn,