The Art of Medicine, Episode #12, How to Practice the Medical Arts

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Jul 26 2020 28 mins  

Recorded April 18, 2020 

Many thanks to Paul Gross, MD, a family practice physician and Editor-in-Chief of “Pulse.” Pulse is an online, weekly publication that addresses the medical humanities through works of poetry, fiction, nonfiction, and photography. The journal's full name is “Pulse Voices from the Heart of Medicine,” and it appears at

Dr. Gross started the magazine because of the disconnect between the science he learned in medical school and its application to real patients. He discovered that writing about medicine and encouraging others to write was an “attempt to get at the truth” of the practice of medicine. 

Dr. Gross observed that the humanities are essential and how they can help train compassionate physicians. He explained how compassion is an indispensable ingredient for medical care and that sometimes, even in modern times, it’s all that physicians are able to offer. 

Dr. Gross conducts writing workshops at the Society of Teachers of Family Medicine. He mentioned that writing can sometimes be therapeutic when physicians write about troubling events they have encountered in their careers. It’s also helpful for other physicians and patients to read and learn from these stories. Dr. Gross described the type of pieces that Pulse publishes and how physicians and others can submit their work.

Dr. Gross can be reached at