‘Lenox Hill’ offers a mix of happiness and sadness, by focusing on the lives of four physicians who struggle to ensure the best for their patients. The documentary makes a point to highlight what motivates them, along with capturing who they are outside their scrubs and gloves. Even though the primary focus is on the four physicians, the documentary pans its lens to those who are involved in their daily lives- their family, friends, colleagues, and of course, the patients. As Dr. Macri puts it, one of the elemental things about the job is the different kinds of people they come in contact with on a day-to-day basis.
Who is Dr. Mitchell Levine?
Dr. Mitchell Levine is the Director of Spine Surgery at Lenox Hill. Additionally, he is also an assistant professor at the Hofstra North Shore-LIJ School of Medicine. His narrative is captured in a small segment, along with the four main figures, the documentary puts its central focus on. He is first shown in a meeting of the neurosurgery department, voicing out what he thinks are real concerns in some of the ideas posited for improvement. However, later he is shown to be diagnosed with cancer in the neck area. This not only affects him but his entire team, who is presented with this news on the day of the neurosurgery retreat.
Dr. Levine thus talks about the harsh reality of being met with the same disease he has treated and studied all his life. Even doctors like Dr. John Boockvar state it as a ‘humbling experience.’ Though he initially wanted to be treated in Lenox Hill, he is later stated to have opted for treatment in Houston. During the neurosurgery retreat, he says, “I gotta figure it out, what my statistics is. And, uh, I’m not gonna let the worry about my future destroy my present. That’s the key…You know something? The bottom line. Takeaway point, it’s a really nice day today.” Thus, Dr. Levine presents the side of having treated patients in the neurosurgery department and being its own patient in several ways.
Though the focus placed on him is relatively less, it does have a point. Dr. Levine says that he doesn’t want pity but also admits that he has called his children home, because it’s human to want to be close to loved ones at a time like this, regardless of whatever ego one may possess, and this in many ways is the truth of life behind those who endure the hardships of grave illnesses like cancer. It’s less about the disease and more about what it does to you as a person.
Where is Dr. Mitchell Levine Now?
Dr. Mitchell Levine does not have much social media presence. That said, he still seems to be working based on patient reviews. One of the reviews read, “Patiently answered all my questions and put me at ease.” In another review, the patient, wrote, “Dr. Levine & his PA Keriann Tomlinson were great communicators, friendly professional & knowledgeable.”
At the end of last year, he also published a paper titled, ‘Minimally Invasive Navigated Foraminal Discectomy via Contralateral Approach Using a 3-Dimensional 4K High-Definition Exoscope: 2-Dimensional Operative Video,’ with Dr. David Langer and several others. Prior to this, the same year, he was interviewed regarding the rise in opportunities in the field of spine technology. He said, “Navigation and robotic-assisted techniques will become standard. The technology is constantly evolving and is more user friendly.” Interestingly, he has a unique hobby, which is also a small business. He makes olive oil.
One can hope that Dr. Levine is doing well despite the set back in his health, as presented in the documentary. His colleagues’ statements and the portfolio of his work are enough proof to understand the kind of contribution Dr. Levine has made to spinal neurosurgery, especially his extensive contribution to laboratory research in the field.
Read More: Where is Dr. Mirtha Macri Now?