The Naked Surgeon by Samer Nashef

 In Cardiology

Sam Nashef is one of the cardiac surgeons I have known since I was first appointed at Bedford and Papworth in 1996. He has always been a clear thinker and has now distilled his critical thinking in his book. He writes with a clear style with the patient in mind.

He describes how his inquisitive mind initially set him on a collision course with his seniors when a junior doctor but now has resulted in him being instrumental in laying the foundation for understanding the risks of operations from the surgical results of previous ones. He helps the reader understand the way a surgeons mind ticks and why mistakes still can happen in surgery. He also clearly points out the abuse of statistics and ‘gaming’ that can take place to improve a surgeons ranking.

He explains how the patient doctor relationship has changed over the time of his practice. Many years ago the doctor was trusted to dispense the appropriate, best treatment; now he is expected to help the patient understand the issues and make a reasonable choice. Inevitably this results in a different type of consultation.

Overall this is a very easy read and highly informative for patients about to undergo cardiac surgery. Perhaps it should be handed out before the patient meets the surgeon to get the most out of the consultation.

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