Never Question the Miracle: A Surgeon's Story

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One World, Ballantine Publishing Group, 1998 - Biography & Autobiography - 377 pages
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When people ask, "How did you get here?" I know they are really asking, "How did you, female of color from Haiti, the poorest country in the Western hemisphere, get here?"

Dr. Rose-Marie Toussaint is unique--a young black woman surgeon specializing in liver and kidney transplants at a major university hospital. How did she get there? In this amazing book Toussaint tells us. Her inspiring story starts when a vodun priest predicts she will grow up to be a physician, then chronicles her rise to the pinnacle of her profession.

Rose-Marie's family struggled not only with her parents' chaotic marriage, but with the seismic changes that were beginning to grip their homeland. When the Toussaints emigrated to Miami, Rose-Marie immersed herself in science and math classes, and her dream of becoming a doctor began to take shape.

But the road to her dream was littered with obstacles: getting into college, making good grades, getting into medical school, and surviving the grueling, soul-crushing rigors that test every surgeon in the making. Add to that Dr. Toussaint's status as a black female in white male-dominated institutions and one can only admire the courage, fortitude, and determination that propelled her to obtain her M.D.--with some help from a few miracles along the way.

As a surgeon, it was her turn to become a miracle worker--for her patients. Dr. Toussaint takes us into hospital rooms to meet desperate patients praying for a life-giving organ, and into the OR to observe the wonder of transplantation. She vividly brings to life the breakneck race against time to prepare transplant patients when an organ suddenly becomes available, the long hours of surgery--sometimes more than 20--that both doctor and patient must endure. And she never forgets that for every life she saves another has been lost.

This is a book full of miracles--not least, Rose-Marie Toussaint's own luminous spirit, which lights up every page. To share her journey is a rare opportunity to experience the faith and resilience of a woman dedicated to making miracles happen.

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About the author (1998)

Rose-Marie Toussaint, M.D., earned her B.S. at Loyola University in New Orleans, and her M.D. at Howard University. She did her post-doctoral training in the surgery departments of Howard University, the University of Pittsburgh, and the University of Wisconsin. She has been assistant professor of surgery at Howard University College of Medicine and associate director of the Howard University Hospital Transplant Center. She is now in private practice.

Anthony E. Santaniello has written and edited publications on nutrition, preventive medicine, the use of computer science in medicine, and general health issues. He has also worked as a producer, researcher, and writer of more than thirty medical films and video programs created for the medical profession.

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