William A. Nolen
William A. Nolen, M.D. (March 20, 1928 – December 20, 1986), was a surgeon and author who resided in Litchfield, Minnesota. He wrote a syndicated medical advice column that appeared in McCall's magazine for many years, and was the author of several books. He died on December 20, 1986, at the University of Minnesota Medical Center from heart disease.
His best known book is The Making of a Surgeon, which continues to be a popular (though now dated) narrative about his experiences as an intern and resident surgeon-in-training at Bellevue Hospital in New York City. Many students contemplating medical school find that it guides their decision.
Nolen conducted research at a 1967 Kathryn Kuhlman fellowship in Philadelphia, with 23 people who claimed to have been cured during her services. Nolen's long term follow-ups concluded there were no cures in those cases. Furthermore, "one woman who was said to have been cured of spinal cancer threw away her brace and ran across the stage at Kuhlman's command; her spine collapsed the next day, according to Nolen, and she died four months later."
Nolen is also known for his book Healing: A Doctor in Search of a Miracle (1974). He spent two years examining faith healers and concluded that no patients with organic disease had been cured. He investigated psychic surgery and discovered it was based on sleight of hand trickery. He uncovered many cases of fraud.
- The Making of a Surgeon. Mid List Press (1970, 1990) ISBN 0-922811-46-6
- A Surgeon's World. New York: Random House (1972) ISBN 0394467450
- Healing: A Doctor in Search of a Miracle. New York: Random House (1974) ISBN 0-394-49095-9
- Surgeon Under the Knife. Book World Promotions (1976) ISBN 0-698-10743-8
- "Dr. William Nolen, 58, Dead; Author of Books on Medicine". The New York Times. Dec 23, 1986. Retrieved 2007-11-12.
- Folkart, Burt A. (Dec 23, 1986). "William Nolen Dies; Wrote `Making of a Surgeon'". Los Angeles Times. Retrieved 2007-11-12.
- "Psychic Healing? Investigator declares no". The Greenville News. Aug 16, 1975. Retrieved 2007-11-12. Also see: William Nolen, Healing: A Doctor in Search of a Miracle. New York: Random House ISBN 0-394-49095-9
- "Dr Nolen Looks at Faith Healing". The San Mateo Times. Mar 7, 1975. Retrieved 2007-11-12.
- Michaelson, Michael (February 2, 1975). "Men of medicine and a medicine man". The New York Times. Retrieved 2007-11-12.
- "Extra-Dispensary Perceptions". Time. Mar 17, 1975. Retrieved 2007-11-12.
- "Inside Religion: Kuhlman Tested By md's Probe". Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Nov 8, 1975. Retrieved 2007-11-12.
- "A follow-up study of 23 patients 'cured' in a Kathryn Kuhlman service". St. Petersburg Times. Nov 2, 1974. Retrieved 2007-11-12.
- Randi, James (1989). The Faith Healers. Prometheus Books. ISBN 0-87975-535-0 page 228.
- Hyman, Ray. (1989). The Elusive Quarry: A Scientific Appraisal of Psychical Research. Prometheus Books. p. 342. ISBN 0-87975-504-0
- Neher, Andrew. (2011). Paranormal and Transcendental Experience: A Psychological Examination. Dover Publications. pp. 170-171. ISBN 0-486-26167-0
- Williams, William F. (2000). Encyclopedia of Pseudoscience: From Alien Abductions to Zone Therapy. Facts on File Inc. p. 287. ISBN 1-57958-207-9 "Minnesota physician William A. Nolen researched faith healing in general and wrote Healing: A Doctor in Search of a Miracle (1974), a book that uncovers many cases of fraud, including the first exposure in the United States of psychic surgery."
- William Nolen Biography from Mid List Press