Surgery Saved My Life TV Poster Image

Surgery Saved My Life

(i)

 

Real health dramas make good medicine.

What parents need to know

Positive messages

The show's focus is on helping people feel better and live healthy lives.

Violence

Some surgical operations can be quite bloody and require forceful pulling, squeezing, and stretching.

Sex

Some naked body parts, but nothing sexually suggestive; no genitals.

Language
Not applicable
Consumerism
Not applicable
Drinking, drugs, & smoking
Not applicable

Parents Need to Know

Parents need to know that this intense reality show focuses on patients undergoing surgery in life-threatening situations. Viewers learn, in detail, why a person's life is at risk. In one show about spine surgery, for example, viewers find out how a deformed spine presses in on the lungs, making it hard for the patient to breathe. Subjects are sometimes children, making the situations even more emotional. Scenes from the surgery include close-up shots of the inside of bodies, including shots of blood, bone, and organs.

Parents say

Not yet rated
Review this title!

What's the story?

The documentary-style series SURGERY SAVED MY LIFE follows people with life-threatening diseases or injuries as they undergo surgery and face the serious physical risks and emotional repercussions of their procedures. In addition to the personal stories, viewers get all the details of the surgeries themselves -- both by watching the actual operations (complete with bloody close-ups) and through digital representations of the repairs. The stories are often intense and emotional, as in one episode that introduced viewers two children stricken with scoliosis -- one living in New York and the other in Sierra Leone. The children have the same surgeon, who grew up poor in Ghana, and while the doctor is equally kind to both his young patients, viewers can't help but feel the sharp contrast in the type of medical care received by the two children because of their environments.

Is it any good?

QUALITY

Teens interested in medicine or social issues -- as well as those with any familiarity with disease or serious injury -- may well be fascinated by this well-made program. And even those without a connection to the issue might find the personal stories compelling. That said, due to the emotional nature of the life-or-death situations, parents may want to watch along with their kids (or at least be on hand to comfort and explain as necessary) and consider keeping especially sensitive children away all together.

Families can talk about...

  • Families can talk about medicine and science. What aspects of medicine do teens find most fascinating? Are there any budding doctors in the house? What part of practicing medicine would be the most fulfilling? The most challenging? What surgical methods or instruments seem the most technologically advanced? Which seem the most crude? Do you think real-life medical problems belong on TV?

TV details

Premiere date:November 30, 2006
Cast:Dominic Bakewell, Gretchen Miller, Jade Gzi
Network:Discovery Channel
Genre:Reality TV
TV rating:TV-14

This review of Surgery Saved My Life was written by

Common Sense Media's unbiased ratings are conducted by expert reviewers and aren't influenced by the product's creators or by any of our funders, affiliates, or partners.

Quality

Our star rating assesses the media's overall quality.

Find out more

About these links

Common Sense Media, a nonprofit organization, earns a small affiliate fee from Amazon or iTunes when you use our links to make a purchase. Thank you for your support.

Read more

About Our Rating System

The age displayed for each title is the minimum one for which it's developmentally appropriate. We recently updated all of our reviews to show only this age, rather than the multi-color "slider." Get more information about our ratings.

Great handpicked alternatives

  • Reality series celebrates the miracle of birth.
  • Some blood and tears; OK for older tweens.

What parents and kids say

See all user reviews

Share your thoughts with other parents and kids Write a user review

A safe community is important to us. Please observe our guidelines

Teen, 13 years old Written byPoisonrocks October 9, 2012

Stupid

so appropiate!
Adult Written bychuchy89@aol.com April 9, 2008

Poll

Did our review help you make an informed decision about this product?

Family Media Agreement