Cost-Effective Use of Leeches and Other Musings of a Medical School
Jeffrey A. Drayer, M.D.
may be one of the world's most respected professions but, as the
author discovered, medical students don't enjoy the same adulation.
This witty satire chronicles one student's journey through the four
years of hilarious hell known as medical school. these essays (and
medical ditties based on Dr. Seuss) provide an insider's guide to
the information they won't tell you in the interview. Discover
how gross anatomy really is, how using leeches can solve the healthcare
crisis, and why the Greek theory of the four humours makes sense
for 20th-century physicians.
1-883620-13-9 Softcover 141 pp
Catalog #: 017 Price: $ 14.95
Soup for the Medical Student Soul
review from The New Physician by Audrey Young, M.D.
If you thought coming to medical school would be a series of epiphanies-the
initial horror of cadaver lab, the thrill of deliver- ing a baby,
the adrenaline rush of the ER-think again. Dr. Jeffrey A Drayer's
hilarious new book, The Cost-Effective Use of Leeches: and Other
Musings of a Medical School Survivor (Galen Press, $14.95), delivers
one unforgettable, punch: Medical school is nothing like what you
see on television.
At first glance, this book presents itself as a simple, funny collection
of half-conscious thoughts generated during the idle hours at an
operating table or during a dull lecture class in medical school.
Drayer devotes one essay, for example, to debating the temptations
of a sample medication closet. In another, he worries that a surgical
career will preclude him from meeting the future Mrs. Drayer. And
later in the book, he dreams of the completely honest residency
application: "All my life, I've wanted to be a dermatologist.
Why dermatology? dermatologists have almost no call, I'll tell you
the truth. I wasn't looking don't work on weekends, don't deal terribly
with sick people, have patients who can actually pay. Nothing could
be further from the truth."
Leeches achieves more than just laughs, though. At its best, Drayer's
writing shines with satire. He attacks mindless tradition, politicking
and the abuse medical students endure on the wards. At times, he
becomes something of a medical student anti-hero charged with exposing
the fakery in medicine and doctoring.
Sometimes the joking lapses into cynicism, however, and his vignettes
betray an awkward sense of medical territoriality. In one essay,
for exampIe, Drayer dreams of starting a program that trains nurse
practitioners to work as brain surgeons-a comment on the encroachment
of mid-level practitioners into historically doctor-dominated realms.
This piece offers little more than a grumbling disaffection with
health care's constant belt-tightening.
Despite the rare lapse, Drayer achieves two things that are highly
unusual in medical writing. First, he serves up witty and ironic
commentary about an often fatally serious profession; readers with
an ear for intelligent humor are certain to find pleasure in this
Second, and more importantly, Drayer captures plainly and genuinely
what being a medical student feels like. Studenthood is terribly
bewil- dering and hardly glamorous, and medical students are likely
to find great comfort in Drayer's funny, understated observations
about the grind of medical training.
You won't get that from "ER"
Wrote A Book?!
A Curriculum Fit For A King
A Personalized Lexicon
In The Beginning
How Gross Is Anatomy?
We Hold These Truths To Be Cell(f)-Evident
Localize Your Own Lesions
Bugs' Prey Road Warrior ,
The Cad In The Dad
My Cafe Au Lait Spot
Neurosurgery Made Simplistic
I Don't Think I Know Anything
The Orient(ation) Express
The Death Of Clinical Arts ("So, How Does Being Dead Make You
Chop On Pop
In The Garden Of Eden
But I Play One On TV
Sew Close, Yet Sew Far Away
How The Grinch Stole Christmas Factor
The VA Spa
The Great Bacteria Myth
Cents And Sensibilities
PTSD: Pediatrics Traumatic Stress Disorder
One Cone, Two Cone, Red Cone, Blue Cone
Back To The Future
Postcard From The Edges
Morton Hears A Murmur
Life As A Lab Rat
Physician Heal Thyself
The ABCs Of Radiology
Medicine Is "Grrreat"
How Many Lawyers Does It Take
Congratulations, You've Been Fired
Publish Or Perish (I'd Rather Perish)
Honduras, I Hardly Knew Thee
The Boreds, Part 2
The Skin Game
Sub-I Of The Tiger
Drayer Does Dallas
IGreen Sputum And Phlegm
In The Joint
Galen Press, Ltd., Tucson, AZ