In White Coat, Ellen Rothman offers a vivid account of her four years at one of the best medical schools in the country, and opens the infamously closed door between patient and doctor. Touching on today's most important medical issues -- such as HMOs, AIDS, and assisted suicide -- the author navigates her way through despair, exhilaration, and a lot of exhaustion in Harvard's classrooms and Boston's hospitals to earn the indisputable title to which we entrust our lives. With a thoughtful, candid voice, Rothman writes about a wide range of experiences -- from a dream about holding the hand of a cadaver she had dissected to the acute embarrasment she felt when asking patients about their sexual histories. She shares her horror at treating a patient with a flesh-eating skin infection, the anxiety of being "pimped" by doctors for information (when doctors quiz students on anatomy and medicine), as well as the ultimate reward of making the transformation and of earning a doctor's white coat. For readers of Perri Klass, Richard Selzer, and the millions of fans of ER, White Coat is a fascinating account of one woman's journey through school and into the high-stakes drama of the medical world.