Pediatric oncologist and palliative care physician Dr. Adam B. Hill suffered despair and disillusionment with the culture of medicine, culminating in a spiral of depression, alcoholism, and an active suicidal plan. Then while in recovery from active addiction, he lost a colleague to suicide, further revealing the extent of the secrecy and broken systems contributing to an epidemic of professional distress within the medical field. By sharing his harrowing story, Dr. Hill helps identify the barriers and obstacles standing in the way of mental health recovery, while pleading for a revolutionary new approach to how we treat individuals in substance use recovery. In fighting stereotypes/stigma and teaching vulnerability, compassion and empathy, Hill’s work is being lauded as a road map for better practices at a time when medical professionals around the world are struggling in silence. evolving

Long Walk Out of the Woods is a game-changing personal narrative, written with a depth of sensitivity, grace, and stunning storytelling ability. This book is required reading for anyone working in modern medicine today and a must-read for anyone personally touched by mental health conditions, suicide and/or addiction.


“In the daunting face of a rising epidemic of depression, addiction, and suicide, Dr Hill’s personal story emerges as a touchstone of essential wisdom in how to address such hardships, energized by compassionate healing. This book is a wakeup call, not only for the medical profession, but for our culture at large. Such profound healing indeed offers great hope, and is best achieved through the sage and honest application of empathy and compassion based on our shared nature and purpose”

—Eben Alexander, MD

Neurosurgeon and author of Living in a Mindful Universe and Proof of Heaven

“Hill’s transparency and integrity will undoubtedly help reduce fear associated with being honest. His commitment to reduce stigma and embrace being a flawed human being as we all are is an example for us all. Thank you, Adam, for the courage and the reminder!”

—Jim Ryser, MA, LMHC, LCAC, TTS

Chronic Pain and Addiction Counselor & Former Arista Records solo artist and guitarist for John Mellencamp


 “Dr. Adam Hill tells a powerfully compelling narrative of a riveting journey, uniquely his and yet with universal insights shared by all healers who have suffered—and isn’t that all of us? The reader is given a window into the inner world of vulnerability, self-doubt, and struggle, juxtaposed with the external façade of toughness that can erode our greatest tools—empathy for others and compassion for our own imperfections. Exposing the stigmatizing and illogical aspects of the culture of medicine when it comes to caring for our own, this book has the power to transform an already shifting culture and should be required reading for all medical trainees.”

 —Christine Moutier, MD

Chief Medical Officer, American Foundation for Suicide Prevention

“Although about addiction and depression, this is a hope-filled book that speaks directly to those overworked, over-committed, and burned out. Dr. Hill is the prototypical ‘wounded healer’ whose life story exemplifies that in helping others reciprocal healing occurs. For those feeling helpless and hopeless, this book can be life-saving.”

—Joseph Maroon, MD

Professor of  Neurosurgery and Heindl Scholar in Neuroscience

   Pittsburgh Steelers Neurosurgeon  

Author of Square One: The Secret to a Balanced Life

“There’s no healing without connection, no matter how much we want it to be otherwise. This is the very honest, true, unadorned story of a young man who wants to be a doctor without quite knowing why and who cracks up on the rocks of self-will, depression, and addiction. He very nearly drowns, but happily for him, for his patients, and the rest of us, he does not. He survives and learns how to use his suffering for his own and the greater good, and for more connection, less isolation, and more healing. Thank you, Adam.”

                                                                        —Mark Vonnegut, MD

“Adam Hill has given us an extraordinary gift. Yes, Dr. Hill is a natural storyteller and the writing is beautiful. Yes, the observations he makes about the isolation of physicians struggling in a system that despises weakness are astonishing and desperately needed. And yes, his suggestions for transforming the culture of medicine, which has grown so ill, are among the wisest and most insightful words on the topic I have read in a decade. These are all gifts, and we should be deeply grateful to him.

But the truly extraordinary gift he has given us is the gift of his own honesty and vulnerability. He has offered a hope that heals to those of us who have struggled with depression, addiction, anxiety, or the lonely fear that so many of us experience in the journey called ‘becoming a doctor.’  By opening himself to us, he has shown us a way out of the woods. I wish every medical student, resident, and attending physician in the country had a copy of this extraordinary book.”

—Raymond Barfield, MD, PhD

 Professor of Pediatrics and Christian Philosophy, Duke University


DECEMBER 17th, 2019