THE INDISPENSABLE CANCER HANDBOOK by Kathryn H. & Eleanor Liebman Johnson Salsbury
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A meticulous, comprehensive guide to what to do after cancer is diagnosed for this disease especially, we're made aware, it's up to the patient and his or her family to secure treatment that's both up-to-date and appropriate for the specific disorder. Among the problems: ""cancer"" is an umbrella term for many very different disorders; treatments aren't standardized; the recommendations of different research centers differ; and ""alternative"" therapies abound, as do quacks who feed on the desperation that a cancer-diagnosis engenders. Although many aspects of diagnosis and treatment are common to different types of cancer, the authors sensibly recognized that the individual reader would be interested in learning about only a single kind. So, Part II of their guide is an alphabetical discussion of each different type of cancer (the symptoms, diagnosis, treatment, research, types of physicians involved), with cross-references to general sections in Part I, ""Understanding Cancer."" There, they cover topics pertinent to all cancer patients: the biology of the disease, how a diagnosis is made, descriptions of the various treatments (x-ray, surgery, chemotherapy included). Their most valuable advice is what to do with the mass of information--where to find the best help. Depending on the type and stage of the cancer, they note, there may be as little as one week after a diagnosis is made to gather information and go to ""the best treatment team at a major cancer center experienced in dealing with your type of cancer."" The responsibility is awesome, as patients have found out on their own again and again; quite simply, ""these decisions can make the difference between living and dying."" But at last each person need not figure it out alone the hard way: the information on where we are with cancer treatment, how to develop a support network, what to do--is all here in a manageable, matter-of-fact form.

Pub Date: Nov. 16th, 1981
Publisher: Seaview--dist. by Harper & Row