Physician, heal thyself: Desire and impairment in physicians' Writings



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Traditionally medicine and literature have lain on opposite ends of the spectrum, but for some physicians, writing is complementary to medicine. I examine selected works of physician-writers that express the difficulties and triumphs of their journeys through their medical career. Through narratives we can learn not only about the world of medicine, but also about the reasons physicians act and respond as they do. \r\n According to Jacques Lacan, desire is the quality of more that leaves us lacking and wanting something else. This quality of more is what I will explore in physicians’ writings. Lacanian desire is one key to the prevalence of the number of impaired physicians. \r\n This work can be a catalyst for change within the medical profession as instructors see and understand the difficulties that lie ahead for their students. Preventive and treatment plans for impaired physicians may include identifying desire as opposed to simply treating behaviors. \r\n



physician experience, literature and medicine, edical Education, addiction