He suggests that medical care should focus on well-being rather than survival. End of life discussions are essential because they help determine how much treatment a patient is willing to endure in order to extend their time on earth. Access Full Document . Dr. Gawande is troubled by the way popular culture presents the deterioration of our bodies as a personal failure, rather than an inevitable process. Please Sign Up to get full document. Dr. Gawande recalls watching another geriatrician, Juergen Bludau treat Jean Gavrilles, an eighty-year-old woman with lung cancer that had spread to her feet and was causing balance problems. They should not take the role of authoritarians, nor dictate exactly what cures their patients will follow, nor should they be completely elucidative and leave the hard-pressed ill person to their appliance. Each chapter of this book is dedicated to a specific subject and includes historical references, research, personal stories, and analysis. When patients near death, doctors can offer any number of treatments that may sustain their lives for a little longer, but these treatments do not necessarily promise an additional amount of time the patient can live and rarely focus on quality of life. Hospice is sometimes considered to be giving up on life and surrendering to illness. We desire to sense appreciation and understanding of our elderly age in every step of life. However, the founders of nursing homes believe that elderly people don’t have to lose their autonomy even if they are becoming more dependent. This can be detrimental to both their mental and physical health. “Hard Discussions” End-of-life care becomes unquestionably increasingly complex … Antibiotics, public health measures, and improvements in surgery have all enabled us to cure … We desire to protect our autonomy while we feel that our lives have an aim and value in old age as in youth. The author’s grandfather and father passed away, and the author reflects on their deaths. Even when you face your hopes and fears and embrace your death, this event can make you feel like the writer of your own life to the fullest. He contrasts this with his own grandfather’s geriatric years in India, where he lived out the rest of his life surrounded by family that didn’t contradict him as patriarch to do as he pleased in his waning years. Currently, most deaths occur in hospitals or nursing homes. Even though old age defines we can’t do everything we’ve done before, we still desire to protect our little freedom. Download "Being Mortal Book Summary, by Atul Gawande" as PDF. Gawande explores different ways to deal with sickness and aging. The first facility of this kind opened in 1983 and it was initially met with resistance from critics who believed that old people can’t take care of themselves. I like reading books and writing summaries. They should focus more on how to comfort their patients with words and actions. Summary. Gawande then connects this story with another experience he had where a patient underwent surgery for cancer even though there was nothing else that could be done for him. Assisted living facilities provide that more than nursing homes do. © 2021 Copyright Good Book Summaries [Daily Updated], link to Spirit Hacking by Shaman Durek Book Summary - Review, link to Money by Laura Whateley [Book Summary - Review]. This could negatively impact the person’s quality of life and mental health in general. One such story is about his father and how he was able to live a good life despite being paralyzed by a tumor. These interviews are particularly significant when you are not dependent on what to do with your life; for instance, that is when others have to decide for you. Instead they send expensive doctors who are useless. In the end, Jewel Douglass is willing to undergo some surgery but no risky chances. For instance, physicians should inquire deadly patients what activities are most magnificent to them – perhaps playing tennis, perhaps being with their kids – and even if it means shortening the sick person’s life, it should ensure information about the cure procedures that will allow the patient to continue these activities for as long as possible. Very little work is usually done by doctors to ensure that people understand how fatal diseases are deadly. By explicitly facing old age, illness, and death, we, as individuals, families, and societies, can make our mortality a less painful experience and even find meaning and aim.eval(ez_write_tag([[300,250],'goodbooksummary_com-leader-2','ezslot_18',113,'0','0'])); Take it or leave it, we will all die. A short summary of this paper. Quality of life is important to everyone. He also needs to hear what trade-offs she will make or avoid. The facility might have around-the-clock nursing staff, but that doesn’t mean that it will meet all the needs or desires of an older person living there. As a physician, he notices his own decline and experiences bouts of depression. This type of care focuses on comfort instead of life extension, and as a result, patients could avoid treatments that bring them closer to death more quickly. eNotes plot summaries cover all the significant action of Being Mortal. In the light of statements that generally accepted to be true and not necessary to prove, which are called axiom, only there are obligatory two things found in life and these are; death and taxes. Whether that be spending time with family or having some independence over their care, people are seeing the value in hospice versus risky treatments. Awards and recognition In 2006, Gawande was named a MacArthur Fellow for his work investigating and articulating modern surgical practices and medical ethics. The first is complete freedom and control over your day-to-day life, and the second is being able to stay in charge of your own story as you age. Shelley decides that it’s time to move him into assisted living, which was first created by Keren Brown Wilson in the 1980s. Even if the subject is extremely contentious, doctors must still be willing to speak about the issue of assisted death for people suffering from excruciating pain. They have the right to decide on some issues, such questions; how they waste their time, the risks they want to take, and how much help they need. However, some nursing homes do not meet the expectations of their residents or their families because they don’t focus on improving the quality of life for the terminally ill and elderly. She is eventually moved into a nursing home, and Felix Silverstone also moves to a retirement community. He also gives advice on how to improve medicine for both doctors and patients. They have no flexibility in their schedule because it is so strict. Since the aging and dying processes include not only the family but also the doctors, it is of the essence for medical professionals to raise their listening and communication talents. Do you think that it's simpler to put your head in the sand instead of face... Good Book Summary is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com. Autonomy is important in these situations because it’s what people want when they’re dying or sick. The closest thing he had was a seminar on being more humane and responsive to patients, which included reading “Death of Ivan Ilyich”. Economic development, life expectancy, and shifting changes towards independence have all shaped how we now deal with … One sociologist compared them to prisons, military camps, orphanages and mental hospitals. People who previously lived in relative freedom suddenly get themselves attached to a program and are forced to give up all personal privacy. On the opposite side of the coin, a family’s deprivation often stayed their last days in dirty poor homes.eval(ez_write_tag([[336,280],'goodbooksummary_com-large-leaderboard-2','ezslot_14',109,'0','0'])); Nowadays, care that was once ensured by the elderly or family of sick is given by doctors and nurses. Dr. Gawande learns a new way of talking about death with his patients based on these examples. Cart All. “The waning days of our lives are given over to treatments that addle our brains and sap our bodies for a sliver’s chance of benefit. Table of Contents. A 20-minute Summary of Atul Gawande's Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End by Instaread Summaries , Jason P. Hilton , et al. Eventually, she does end up in one and becomes depressed because she can’t do what she wants anymore. However, nowadays, we can protect our wellness longer, slow down impairment and delay death thanks to doctors. At the end of his father’s life, Gawande appreciates his dad’s decision not to fight death by any means possible. This is because they focus on selling their amenities and activities rather than what would actually make the patient happy. She has always been independent and doesn’t like the idea of going to a nursing home. At times he takes the perspective of a patient who’s worried about dying, while at others he speaks from the point of view of an ordinary person or someone curious about what happens when we die. As thinking about their old age home, boring rooms filled with dullness and depression are imagined by most people – and this cliché is not far from the sign. Buy this book from Amazoneval(ez_write_tag([[580,400],'goodbooksummary_com-medrectangle-3','ezslot_3',105,'0','0'])); Considering about death and illnesses is unpleasant. There are many reasons why someone might not feel comfortable in one place over another. Want to get the main points of Being Mortal in 20 minutes or less? Gawande also reflects on the lessons offered by Tolstoy’s “Death of Ivan Ilyich.” Gawande advocates that we treat patients with respect and dignity just as they are about to pass away, so that they can feel their full humanity. Really, by physicians and caregivers, a great job of providing basic medical care is done. Nursing homes and assisted living facilities do not always provide the emotional support that they should. Gawande covers such things as demographic shifts in aging, the history of dying in America prior to the late twentieth century, the creation of nursing homes, assisted-living facilities, how our motivations shift as we age, how we respond to pain, and assisted suicide. We often don’t desire to speak or think about matters such as old age and mortality – neither for ourselves nor for our loved ones. For many years, the author watched her mother suffer in a nursing home. Medical progress has made it less likely that someone will die suddenly after a single illness, like malaria or heart attack. Whereas independence is among our core values, the reality is that when full independence is now untenable, a point is going to come alive. The residents are washed, fed and dressed, and they are made sure that everyone gets the proper dose of their medication by these doctors and caregivers. Subsequently, participants were asked to evaluate how much time they willing to expend with each person on the cards. Sign up for a 5-day free trial here. The realities of the … Account & Lists Account Returns & Orders. Topics: Chapter, Summary. Shortform: The World's Best Book Summaries, Shortform Blog: Free Guides and Excerpts of Books, Being Mortal Book Summary, by Atul Gawande, The Culture Map Book Summary, by Erin Meyer. It does mean that patients choose to face death with dignity, but it also means a better quality of life. The book was published in multiple languages including English, consists of 297 pages and is available in Kindle Edition format. The author uses different literary devices in each chapter to illuminate the subject matter. Throughout the book, Gawande shares personal stories to illustrate his points. She is able to return home again and dies in her sleep after deciding that she wants to be medicated enough so that she won’t be wakeful when it happens. As you get older, it becomes harder to maintain an independent lifestyle. Dr. Bill Thomas revolutionized nursing home practices by introducing pets, children and plants to the homes. This eliminates the feeling that they can do what they want when they want to. The book addresses end-of-life care, hospice care, and also contains Gawande's reflections and personal stories. Sometimes these treatments don’t even work or make the patient’s condition worse. He feels fulfilled in caring for his wife who has lost her sight and memory problems but still struggles with the challenges of living independently. This detailed literature summary also contains Topics for Discussion on Being Mortal by Atul Gawande. Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End. He begins with the story of his wife’s grandmother and ends with that of his father, which is more personal than the other stories. Either way, discussions surrounding end-of-life care will increase, which may improve quality of life overall for the elderly population. Surprisingly, when checked two years later, it was seen that the number of prescriptions per person fell to half of the other regular nursing homes, and deaths fell 15 percent per year. Attempts to prevent death generally do more harm than good. The significant thing is to argue the questions that come with age and illness openly with your family and friends, for example, by keeping in mind the “exchange” you want to get in your illness or death bed. What's special about Shortform: Sound like what you've been looking for? Besides, if you take an early view at the end of your life, it can have a strengthening effect on your life. Doctors have been fighting death for so long that they’ve lost sight of their original purpose—to help people live better lives. Check out the storify, very rich with resources and links. Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End was in October 2014. Do you find that cash slips from your hand as quick as a bar of cleanser? Being Mortal Summary & Analysis: Amazon.sg: Books. Complete summary of Atul Gawande's Being Mortal. Before something bad happens (like death), determining your wants and communicating with family members and doctors will make your last days more meaningful. As you age or get sick, you should admit the new boundaries imposed by your body and mind. When doctors take on more paternalistic roles, they can be manipulative and try to control situations rather than being informative or collaborative in determining what is best for the patient. When caring for a number of ill and dependent people, caregivers fall back on rigid schedules. Nowadays, modern medicine provides us to have a life longer than ever used. There is no deterioration in our brains, but, the brains are getting smaller and, dementia is shown as a result.eval(ez_write_tag([[300,250],'goodbooksummary_com-medrectangle-4','ezslot_1',106,'0','0'])); As our bodily systems gradually weaken, we are getting open to more prone to injury and illness, and take less care of ourselves. Being Mortal is a book written by Atul Gawande, and it is a book that closely follows concepts of death, aging and mortality. Doctors must be able to temper anxiety through comforting words and actions rather than just providing a stoic overview of facts and biological processes involved in the disease. In the same way, the hospice service should be enlarged and developed. On July 14 at 9pm Eastern and July 15 at 8pm GMT (3pm Eastern), NephJC discussed Atul Gawande's Being Mortal. In the past centuries, illnesses that have restricted after the age of 50 have often resulted in rapid death. Patients depend on doctors for both information about their diseases as well as stability when dealing with highly emotional news that can sometimes be painful. Alice Hobson is a woman who lives alone. Instead of treating the cancer itself, he focused on improving her quality of life and reducing her risk of falling by focusing on her feet and increasing caloric intake so she could maintain weight gain while also having someone dine with her regularly in order to ensure she would not be alone when eating meals at home without assistance from family members or friends. Many people, however, either do not determine their wants or they wait too long to communicate them and carry out those plans. Fortunately, enough medical care is provided by today’s hospitals and homes for old ages. They focus on physical care, but don’t attend to patients’ psychological needs. Now, most often people die from chronic issues that accumulate over time and are not as sudden. Even if nursing home residents are physically limited, they still want some sense of independence and control. They also arranged the kids in the local kindergarten to visit this facility regularly and even two dogs, four cats, and 100 birds were bought! Being Mortal Medicine and What Matters in the End First Edition This edition was published in 2014 by Metropolitan Books in New York, USA. These discussions also cover what quality of life the patient is willing to sacrifice along the way. Gawande notes that many people do not have these conversations with their families and doctors, but those who do often need less critical medical care, enroll in hospice earlier than others, suffer for a shorter time period following the death of their loved one, and show signs of depression for a lesser amount of time. Please Sign Up to get full document. Many people avoid this conversation because it can be difficult and depressing, but they don’t realize that having the conversation could actually help them live longer lives. 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