Neurosurgeon pens book of poetry about his surgeries

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By Marissa Wells

Contributing Writer

“My Surgical Cases Told in Poems,” by neurosurgeon Paul Kaloostian, is a compilation of true medical stories the author encountered during his journey as a young neurosurgeon.

“It highlights through medical poetry the variety of pathology and issues that a neurosurgeon faces head-on in this difficult and often impossible road of healing those that are tremendously sick,” Kaloostian said.

The book was inspired by Kaloostian’s patients and his desire to share more about the life that surgeons lead.

“I often talk with friends who are not in medicine about my hours and cases and they always seem to be unaware, and oftentimes uninterested, in what we do for a living,” Kaloostian said. “We have been given a tremendous responsibility to enter the lives of other human beings in order to learn more about their problems in an attempt to alter their current path of health.”

It was important for Kaloostian to create a book that showcased the tenacity of both patients and doctors.

“I wanted to show how courageous and strong patients are as they are often in the fight of their lives,” said the author. “I wanted to show that doctors are not always the rigid, calculating, formula-based people conveyed, but rather people that can be sensitive, creative and emotional.”

“My Surgical Cases Told in Poems” is intended for those interested in poetry and creative medicine.

“My favorite aspect of the text is being able to share such intimate patient stories/cases (anonymous of course) in the form of poetry with each line conveying unique points that must be thought about in order to understand the case,” Kaloostian said.

A variety of cases are highlighted in his book, including traumatic brain injuries, brain tumors, brain hemorrhages, plagiocephaly, and more.

It’s the author’s hope that readers are moved after reading his book.

“I would feel fulfilled if readers gain an appreciation for the beauty of the human language, the creative approach that poetry offers, and the fantastic courage and strength that those who are sick demonstrate,” Kaloostian said.

Kaloostian is based in Southern California. For more information about the author and his work, visit

“My Surgical Cases Told in Poems” is available for $16.05 on, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and other online sites.

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