Nabil Othman

If the apocalypse is going to happen, now seems like the time. From hybrid killer bees to domestic terrorism, catastrophe bingo has displaced baseball as America’s pastime.

No one seems to have a strategy. Until now.

Like our modern world, the discipline of anesthesiology is filled with long periods of stressful uncertainty interrupted by unpredictable catastrophes.

Vigilance shares how anesthesiologists utilize statistical thinking, cognitive psychology, and behavioral economics to generate stability and prevent complications in the operating room—and how these same strategies apply to our broader systemic problems.

Anesthesiologists have perfected their methodology over the last seventy years. Death from anesthesia complications has fallen more than 98 percent despite increasing patient and surgical complexity.

Learn how to recognize the invisible synergistic systems that control our modern world, how to intervene decisively when disasters happen, and how to manage sudden catastrophes to prevent harm.

Vigilance is a guide for thriving in our new, uncertain world.

Press & Praise

Rick Novak, MD,

"Vigilance describes why adrenaline junkies are drawn to a career in anesthesiology. Dr. Othman's book is packed with personal experiences and analysis, giving readers insights into the most fascinating of all medical specialties."

Mark McLaughlin, MD, Princeton Brain and Spine Care, Author of Cognitive Dominance: A Brain Surgeon's Quest to Out-Think Fear

"Vigilance is a fresh look into medicine through the lens of an anesthesiologist navigating a world of complex systems, synergy and Black Swans. The lessons contained apply universally in and out of the operating theatre. This is a must read for anyone in healthcare and also for people interested in managing uncertainty and minimizing work or life catastrophes."

Niran Al-Agba, MD, Silverdale Pediatrics, Author of Patients at Risk: The Rise of the Nurse Practitioner and Physician Assistant in Healthcare

"Dr. Othman explains in plain terms the reasons medical expertise is so critical to patient safety. Vigilance emphasizes the importance of education, training, and mindful practice in the medical profession--backing up five decades of research that shows physician-led care is safe and effective. A must-read for all patients having surgery and their loved ones who will be caring for them."

Nabil Othman, MD, is an anesthesiology resident physician at Cedars Sinai Hospital in Los Angeles. A serial innovator, Dr. Othman helped design an electronic medical record system for a primary care clinic in rural Haiti and studied a novel clotting assay to protect infants after congenital heart surgery.

In his free time, Dr. Othman enjoys exploring nature on far-flung trekking adventures. He has hiked the Annapurna Circuit in Nepal, Mount Whitney in California, and, most recently, the Kalalau Trail in Hawaii. He blogs at

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