This image is a depiction of the discovery of anesthesia (October 16th, 1846, at Harvard’s Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts).

Dr. William Morton, a local dentist, demonstrates the use of inhaled ether to anesthetize patient Edward Abott.  Dr. John Warren then painlessly removes a tumor from Abbott’s neck. After Warren finishes and Abbott regains consciousness, the surgeon turns to his medical audience and utters, “Gentlemen, this is no humbug.”

The profession of medicine offers a lifetime of fascination, and no specialty is more fascinating than Anesthesiology.

The Anesthesia Consultant is a portal into the captivating and compelling world of the operating room.  The Anesthesia Consultant is designed to inform and entertain both laypeople and medical specialists.

Whether you’re an anxious patient with a question regarding a future surgery, or a medical professional investigating the academic specialty of anesthesiology, The Anesthesia Consultant site has answers for you.

The Pages listed in the sidebar summarize topics of interest to non-medical readers. There are dozens of additional pages on anesthesia topics.  Type your keyword into the SEARCH box to research your topic.

The Clinical Problems posted listed in the sidebar are written for Anesthesia Professionals. There are dozens of additional posts of Clinical Problems for Anesthesia Professionals.  Type your keyword into the SEARCH box to research your topic.

Presented by Richard Novak, MD, a Stanford-trained anesthesiologist and internal medicine specialist in active clinical practice at Stanford University Hospital in Palo Alto, California.

For questions, contact:


Published in September 2017:  The second edition of THE DOCTOR AND MR. DYLAN, Dr. Novak’s debut novel, a medical-legal mystery which blends the science and practice of anesthesiology with unforgettable characters, a page-turning plot, and the legacy of Nobel Prize winner Bob Dylan.


In this debut thriller, tragedies strike an anesthesiologist as he tries to start a new life with his son.

Dr. Nico Antone, an anesthesiologist at Stanford University, is married to Alexandra, a high-powered real estate agent obsessed with money. Their son, Johnny, an 11th-grader with immense potential, struggles to get the grades he’ll need to attend an Ivy League college. After a screaming match with Alexandra, Nico moves himself and Johnny from Palo Alto, California, to his frozen childhood home of Hibbing, Minnesota. The move should help Johnny improve his grades and thus seem more attractive to universities, but Nico loves the freedom from his wife, too. Hibbing also happens to be the hometown of music icon Bob Dylan. Joining the hospital staff, Nico runs afoul of a grouchy nurse anesthetist calling himself Bobby Dylan, who plays Dylan songs twice a week in a bar called Heaven’s Door. As Nico and Johnny settle in, their lives turn around; they even start dating the gorgeous mother/daughter pair of Lena and Echo Johnson. However, when Johnny accidentally impregnates Echo, the lives of the Hibbing transplants start to implode. In true page-turner fashion, first-time novelist Novak gets started by killing soulless Alexandra, which accelerates the downfall of his underdog protagonist now accused of murder. Dialogue is pitch-perfect, and the insults hurled between Nico and his wife are as hilarious as they are hurtful: “Are you my husband, Nico? Or my dependent?” The author’s medical expertise proves central to the plot, and there are a few grisly moments, as when “dark blood percolated” from a patient’s nostrils “like coffee grounds.” Bob Dylan details add quirkiness to what might otherwise be a chilly revenge tale; we’re told, for instance, that Dylan taught “every singer with a less-than-perfect voice…how to sneer and twist off syllables.” Courtroom scenes toward the end crackle with energy, though one scene involving a snowmobile ties up a certain plot thread too neatly. By the end, Nico has rolled with a great many punches.

Nuanced characterization and crafty details help this debut soar.

Click on the image below to reach the Amazon link to The Doctor and Mr. Dylan:


Learn more about Rick Novak’s fiction writing at by clicking on the picture below:  




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