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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Theri Griego-Raby, MD (Northwestern Memorial Hospital)
Description: Dr. Micozzi captures the essence of what it takes to truly integrate multiple medical philosophies. I am elated that he refrains from using the term "alternative." Bottom line — western medical doctors must educate themselves on how to responsibly use these various healing practices and the only way to do that is to invest time in researching the literature that supports the integration and encourages self care.
Purpose: The purpose of this book is to educate oncologists and any western medical physicians about appropriate complementary and integrative medicine in cancer care and prevention. The author eloquently meets these worthwhile objectives.
Audience: The intent is to educate oncologists and other western medical physicians. Oncology fellowship programs should make this required reading.
Features: This book thoroughly reviews cancer biology and ecology and details many appropriate integrative modalities and the evidence-based research that supports the integration. The book concisely and thoroughly reviews history, description, and use of common integrative cancer care modalities. Unique inclusions are the last two chapters on a patient's perspective and the legal and regulatory issues surrounding access to alternative cancer treatments. Shortcomings include simplified sketches of the herbs and the failure to list the credentials of the authors of the chapters.
Assessment: I am encouraged and elated that Dr. Micozzi has taken on the task of educating western medical physicians who are caring for those with cancer or at risk for cancer on the use of complementary and integrative medicine. Over the past 10 years as a practicing integrative internist at a tertiary care academic university medical setting, I have experienced how the lack of physician education is a major barrier to moving integrative care, research, and education to a level where these interventions are being used with consistent accountability, safety , responsibility, and, ultimately, the patient's best interest in mind. This book achieves its objective elegantly. I would encourage any physician to read it.