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[Perspectives] Physician narratives of illness

06 Jul 2019

In psychiatrist Linda Gask's memoir The Other Side of Silence, she describes an exhaustive experience of depression during medical school. “There came a point when I couldn't go on. My head was splitting open and I struggled to hold the pieces of my brain together”, Gask writes. Her candid memoir is part of a changing trajectory of physician narratives of illness that have moved from often anonymised accounts in the early 20th century to deeply personal, owned contemporary works. We've examined a selection of physician narratives of illness from the UK and USA and discovered how illness can conflict with doctors’ professional identities and how difficult it can be for health professionals to be open about illness, especially mental health problems.

Click here to view the full article which appeared in The Lancet