Seven Signs of Life
Unforgettable Stories from an Intensive Care Doctor
For Readers of Paul Kalanithi’s When Breath Becomes Air, an Intensive Care Doctor Reveals How Everyday Emotions Are Taken to Extremes in the ICU
Dr. Aoife Abbey takes us beyond the medical perspective to see the humanity at work inside our hospitals through the eyes of doctors and nurses as they witness and experience the full spectrum of human emotion with every shift. It is their responsibility to mitigate the grief of a family in mourning, calm a patient about to die, and confront their own fear of failure when lives are on the line. Whether they're providing hospice care, tending to victims of car accidents or violent attacks, determining the correct treatment for someone displaying signs of a heart-attack or stroke, and managing staff, stress is a doctor's number one companion. Cycling through the whirlwind of emotion that accompanies every case isn’t only exhausting—it can be fatal.
Told using seven key emotions—fear, grief, joy, distraction, anger, disgust, and hope—Seven Signs of Life opens the door, and heart, of the hectic life inside a hospital to reveal what it means to be alive and how it feels to care for others.