Weird thing to find in my readings for “Health and Physical Assessment”

My textbook for “Health and Physical Assessment” is called Physical Examination and Health Assessment¬†(first Canadian edition) by Carolyn Jarvis. I’ve only done two readings from it, and it’s mostly what I expect. Largely, it’s written in a very scientific tone. It’s a textbook about anatomy, some common forms of illness, and techniques on how to assess a patient.

What’s surprising is something I found right in the middle of chapter 18, (thorax and lungs). The author uses an emotive, almost poetic voice to describe the baby’s first breath:

Breath is life. When the newborn inhales the first breath, the lusty cry that follows reassures anxious parents that their baby is all right.

(Jarvis, C. Physical Examination and Health Assessment. First Canadian Edition. p. 442)

The chapter continues immediately afterward in its characteristic, professional manner for the rest of the chapter, as if nothing happened. I read it, and had to go back to make sure that I didn’t imagine it. I don’t even know what they’re trying to get at with the whole “breath is life” thing. It’s almost philosophical, but then there’s no content there.

Just weird, that’s all.

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The Grey Literature

This is the personal blog of Benjamin Gregory Carlisle PhD. Queer; Academic; Queer academic. "I'm the research fairy, here to make your academic problems disappear!"

2 thoughts on “Weird thing to find in my readings for “Health and Physical Assessment””

  1. What she doesn’t mention is the placenta that follows the baby… blech…

  2. Funny! Grant’s noticed randomness like that in some of his science texts too, departs from the scientific, detached-sounding narrative to poetic sentimentalism quickly.. I guess there’s a person behind the writing after all.

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