AfterShock: What to Do When the Doctor Gives You--Or Someone You Love--a Devastating Diagnosis by Jessie Gruman | Paperback | Barnes & Noble
AfterShock: What to Do When the Doctor Gives You--Or Someone You Love--a Devastating Diagnosis
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AfterShock: What to Do When the Doctor Gives You--Or Someone You Love--a Devastating Diagnosis

by Jessie Gruman
     
 

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Every year millions of Americans are diagnosed with cancer, stroke, HIV/AIDS, multiple sclerosis, ALS, and other life-threatening or life-altering diseases. When faced with a devastating diagnosis people must quickly understand the diagnosis, prognosis, and choose from several treatment options—while still in shock. AfterShock identifies the

Overview

Every year millions of Americans are diagnosed with cancer, stroke, HIV/AIDS, multiple sclerosis, ALS, and other life-threatening or life-altering diseases. When faced with a devastating diagnosis people must quickly understand the diagnosis, prognosis, and choose from several treatment options—while still in shock. AfterShock identifies the processes required to respond to a serious diagnosis, regardless of the specific disease.

Social psychologist Gruman offers practical advice in a 10-stage approach to making clear-headed, informed decisions about who to tell and when; how to get a second opinion or find the right doctor and hospital; where to find reliable online information and telephone help-lines about a particular diagnosis and treatment; how to navigate the health care maze; where to turn for support and comfort.
Dr. Gruman not only draws on her expertise in consumer health information and the advice of doctors and nurses, she shares the personal stories of people who have dealt with traumatic diagnoses, including her own experience of having had three different kinds of cancer and a dangerous heart condition. AfterShock is inspiring and empowering, and is an essential companion book to the disease-specific titles that most people with a devastating diagnosis purchase.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

“I consider this book so valuable I plan to keep it on my bedside table should I need it later on. Its recommendations are based not just on the author's experiences with illness, but also on interviews with more than 250 others: patients, family members, nurses, doctors, health plan administrators, managers of busy practices and nonprofit leaders.” —Jane E. Brody, New York Times

“A comprehensive and invaluable guide. The plain language and easy-to-follow instructions make this a ‘must have' for every family, healthy or otherwise.” —Tom Brokaw, NBC Anchor

AfterShock is important to have in your home, not just to give you vital information should you get bad news about your own health, but also to help friends and family who may have to cope with all of the issues facing them.” —Barbara Walters, ABC News

“Those who must enter the emotionally turbulent world of medical care for a serious illness always want, but often lack, the calming influence of a sensible companion who has been there before. Jessie Gruman's book provides that companionship and will be greatly valued by many facing disturbing diagnoses.” —Harold Varmus, M.D., President and CEO of Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, and Nobel Prize recipient

“There comes a moment in all our lives when we get bad news about ourselves or someone we love. Jessie Gruman shows that how we handle the news--and what we do next--can make a huge difference in the life of the person affected. As someone who has been through a shocking episode with a child, I find the book worth reading and--just as important--worth keeping close at hand.” —Judy Woodruff, special correspondent for The NewsHour with Jim Lehrer

“Anyone with a scary diagnosis would do him/herself a favor by reading this book without delay. AfterShock is wise, sensitive, practical, readable, and helpful in the extreme.” —Betty Rollin, author of First, You Cry and Here's the Bright Side

“This is an extraordinary guide based on solid research and depth of expertise. It is infused with clarity, wit, wisdom, compassion, and most of all, hope.” —Vartan Gregorian, President, Carnegie Corporation of New York

“If someone you love has ever had a frightening diagnosis, they surely could have used Jessie Gruman's book. By assuring you that your initial state of shock is normal, then by guiding you through the ways to make tough choices, AfterShock helps restore the sense of control you probably lost. A how-to on getting the best care, the book is both reassuring and empowering.” —Lesley Stahl, correspondent on 60 Minutes, CBS

“Each of us, or one of our loved ones, is likely to receive a diagnosis of devastating illness. That is why this perceptive, comforting, and practical book belongs on every family's shelf.” —Joseph A. Califano Jr., Chairman and President, the National Center on Addiction and Substance Abuse (CASA) at Columbia University, and former U.S. Secretary of Health, Education and Welfare, 1977–1979

“In this period of bewildering complexity in our fragmented health system, Jessie Gruman's book is a quiet, reassuring refuge from the challenge of receiving shocking medical news--empowering to the patient and to his/her family, helping them to become active participants in the planning and the delivery of their health care and health maintenance. AfterShock is an invaluable medical resource and supportive companion.” —Louis W. Sullivan, M.D., President Emeritus, Morehouse School of Medicine, and U.S. Secretary of Health and Human Services, 1989–1993

“This is a book about life. The poignant stories attest to the enduring value of friends and family--as well as medical professionals--in helping find a path through the painful first shock and wrenching turmoil of a life-changing diagnosis. Everyone can benefit from this book. Don't wait until you think you need it. Read it now.” —Mary O'Neil Mundinger, Dr.P.H., R.N., Dean and Centennial Professor in Health Policy, Columbia University School of Nursing

“When someone close to you is diagnosed with a serious illness, do them a big favor--give them this book. Dr. Gruman has written a compelling and comprehensive guide to making use of the best available evidence to respond to a bad diagnosis.” —John W. Rowe, M.D., Executive Chairman, Aetna

“Jessie Gruman knows of what she speaks. If you or a loved one has received a devastating diagnosis, AfterShock sympathetically lays out what to do and how to do it. Gruman's book is clear, concise, wide-ranging, elegantly composed, richly illustrated by personal reflections, deeply informed, and highly practical. This is a work I will want to share with family and friends.” —Harvey V. Fineberg, M.D., Ph.D., President, Institute of Medicine

“For patients and families faced with bad diagnostic news, it would be hard to find a more useful and dependable support. Jessie Gruman is wise, practical, and authoritative--and she's been there.” —Jeremiah Barondess, M.D., President, New York Academy of Medicine

“No doctor can tell you everything you need to know about how to respond to a devastating diagnosis. AfterShock can help you make good choices about all the elements of your new and challenging situation. Jessie Gruman is a great friend of seriously ill patients. If you let her help you--she will.” —David Nathan, M.D., President Emeritus, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute

“The discovery of a medical problem causes a crisis not only for the patient but also for the family. The author, having been through these unsettling problems several times and having shown remarkable resilience, lays out practical suggestions on what to do and also how to relieve the stress.” —Aaron T. Beck, M.D., University Professor of Psychiatry, University of Pennsylvania, and Lasker Award recipient

“This is a splendid example of turning one's recurrent frightening situation into a positive gift for others. I think the book will be most helpful to people who seek more information. They will be able to return to the book repeatedly as their need for different information and their readiness to use it change as they adapt to their devastating diagnosis. This book, like its characterization of many nurses, is ‘pure gold.'” —Martha N. Hill, Ph.D., R.N., Dean, Johns Hopkins University School of Nursing

“The medical community owes Dr. Gruman a huge thanks for writing this courageous book. Anyone confronting some of the frightening diseases that it is our great misfortune to suffer can be comforted and guided by this wonderful volume.” —Kenneth L. Davis, M.D., President and CEO, Mount Sinai Medical Center

“Reading this gorgeously written book is both an emotional and intellectual experience. It is a ‘must have' for anyone touched by a devastating illness either directly or through a loved one. Any health professional not deeply moved by the contents should find another line of work.” —Claire Fagin, Ph.D., R.N., Dean Emerita, University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing

“After the shock of a devastating diagnosis comes the ‘aftershock,' when a person must learn the topography of a strange and frightening terrain. Written with unpretentious authority, AfterShock is a humane and immensely important book about coping with a catastrophic illness.” —Robert M. Butler, M.D., President and CEO, International Longevity Center, USA

AfterShock is an amazing guide for the overwhelmed person or family member asking ‘What do I do next?' It is filled with practical advice which is mixed--in a most pleasantly readable style--with the observations of someone who has ‘been there--done that' but who also knows the psychological terrain of illness. Gruman recognized the gap in information for this period and has filled it beautifully.” —Jimmie C. Holland, M.D., Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center

“This is a wise and compassionate book. It should be recommended reading for all patients facing difficult medical decisions. It also should be recommended reading for medical students and doctors-in-training.” —George E. Thibault, M.D., Chief Medical Officer and Vice President of Clinical Affairs, Partners HealthCare System

“With her first book, social psychologist Gruman (founder & president, Ctr. for the Advancement of Health) aims to empower patients, and those close to them, with practical and well-organized information about how to use the first few days after a serious medical diagnosis to help those involved make the right decisions for themselves. This is a very sensitively written book, with patient concerns always central and information arranged to avoid overwhelming the reader ... Highly recommended for all public library and consumer health collections.” —Elizabeth J. Eastwood, Mesa P.L., Los Alamos, NM, Library Journal (*starred review)

special correspondent for The NewsHour with Jim Le Judy Woodruff
There comes a moment in all our lives when we get bad news about ourselves or someone we love. Jessie Gruman shows that how we handle the news—and what we do next—can make a huge difference in the life of the person affected. As someone who has been through a shocking episode with a child, I find the book worth reading and—just as important—worth keeping close at hand.
Publishers Weekly
Gruman brings thorough research, interviews and personal experience to this informed, accessible guidebook for responding to news of poor health. Diagnosed four times with serious illnesses including cancer and a heart condition, Gruman, a medical journalist and president of the Center for the Advancement of Health, knows firsthand how such information can overwhelm a patient. Her advice is concrete but delivered with empathy and enlivened by testimony of other patients. In clear language, she explains how to educate oneself about the disease, treatment options and specialists; how to obtain the best care, involve the support of family and friends, and handle career-related issues. Gruman includes a useful chapter on dealing with potential health insurance and financial problems, and she suggests strategies for coping with stress caused by living with a disease, such as finding distraction, exploring spirituality or seeking counseling. The detailed appendixes on resources for finding the appropriate doctor and hospital, nonprofit organizations, clinical trials and second-opinion services, among others, are helpful tools for patients and caregivers. (Feb.) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Library Journal
With his first book, social psychologist Gruman (founder & president, Ctr. for the Advancement of Health) aims to empower patients, and those close to them, with practical and well-organized information about how to use the first few days after a serious medical diagnosis to help those involved make the right decisions for themselves. This is a very sensitively written book, with patient concerns always central and information arranged to avoid overwhelming the reader. Gruman uses various interesting points of view expressed by experts in the field, as well as her own personal experiences, to illustrate key issues and ideas, which helps to confirm that there is no one right way to react to a diagnosis. The mix of topics covered in the ten chapters and eight appendixes includes the factual "Finding the Right Doctor and Hospitals" and a chapter called "Involve Others," which covers interpersonal issues. Highly recommended for all public library and consumer health collections. Elizabeth J. Eastwood, Mesa P.L., Los Alamos, NM Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780802715029
Publisher:
Walker & Company
Publication date:
02/06/2007
Edition description:
First Edition
Pages:
304
Product dimensions:
6.47(w) x 8.30(h) x 0.95(d)

Meet the Author

Jessie Gruman, Ph. D., is President of the Center for the Advancement of Health, an independent, nonpartisan Washington-based institute dedicated to helping individuals make use of scientific information when making decisions about their health. Former director of public education for the American Cancer Society, Dr. Gruman has been published in the New York Times, Chicago Sun Times, Washington Post, and other newspapers and magazines. This is her first trade book.

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