M.D.: One Doctor's Adventures Among the Famous and the Infamous porn the Jungles of Panama to a Park Avenue Practice by
Kirkus Star

M.D.: One Doctor's Adventures Among the Famous and the Infamous porn the Jungles of Panama to a Park Avenue Practice

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A grandly engaging autobiography from the physician who, among other exploits, autopsied Sherwood Anderson and supervised the anticancer treatments of the exiled Shah of Iran. ""Sherwood Anderson had been killed by a toothpick!"" Kean tells us, the splinter swallowed along with a martini olive, puncturing the famed writer's colon. Kean cut his way toward that bizarre discovery in 1941, while doctoring in the Canal Zone as an ambitious young tropical diseases specialist. Before then--as he relates in an expert yarnspinner's mix of humor, suspense, and wonder--he grew up in Greenwich Village, studied medicine at Columbia, paid his dues doctoring in Panama (where he probably ""killed"" his first patient through an excessive injection of quinine), enjoyed a transatlantic fling with a French showgirl, and, in London, traded barbs with pro-Nazi Joe Kennedy. The anecdotes flurry on: chasing rare penicillin in postwar Germany; moving to N.Y.C., setting up a lucrative Park Avenue practice that drew famous patients including Salvador Dali (whom Kean treated for amoebic dysentery and almost commissioned a portrait from, until learning from the surrealist that the finished image would be of ""a fish""); coaxing a 30-foot tapeworm from a billionaire prospector--all culminating in several chapters devoted to the Shah's treatment. These grave, faintly fawning, pages detail a broken trail of missed medical chances--due largely to the Shah's stubborn failure to fully treat his cancer--and of political coldbloodedness on the part of Pres. Carter and other world figures. More upbeat chapters close Kean's account, however, as he traces his lifelong pursuit of medical villains--including the bug responsible for Montezuma's revenge. Assisted by Dahlby, a former editor at Newsweek International, Kean offers a memoir to remember--a rich and generous (480-page) mix of medical and personal adventure, lore, and mystery.

Pub Date: Feb. 1st, 1989
Publisher: Ballantine