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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Ann Pittier, MD (University of Washington Medical Center)
Description: With the tremendous success of cancer management, the goal of treatment has been to improve the therapeutic ratio in order to preserve an acceptable quality of life for patients who survive cancer. Treatments offered to preserve life are increasingly effective, but leave patients with life-long sequelae. This book provides those in the research and clinical setting a fundamental foundation upon which to build.
Purpose: The focus is on providing a molecular and physiologic understanding of the long-term side effects that often plague cancer survivors. This is particularly imperative as more patients are cured with modern medicine and radiation. To provide optimal care for these patients, a long term "chronic disease approach" must be employed, and researchers and clinicians alike must have a firm basis of understanding of the processes behind the side effects. Even with improvement of the therapeutic ratio this remains an important aspect of patient care and must be addressed in a multidisciplinary setting. This book provides a basic science understanding of the processes behind the side effects of radiation.
Audience: This book is appropriate for residents, clinicians, radiobiologists, and medical physicists as it addresses the fundamentals necessary for a firm understanding of radiation sequelae. It provides the framework for the knowledge that can be gained via scientific application or in a clinical setting.
Features: The color pictures, graphs, diagrams, and tables beautifully illustrate the main concepts of each chapter. Each chapter begins with a summary and is divided into clearly labeled segments. Chapters outline the guidelines and models for researchers and clinicians to use and address the in-depth physiologic and molecular background of radiation sequelae. This book is not meant to be a definitive text on diagnosis and management, but rather a platform upon which to build clinical/research knowledge.
Assessment: This fundamental look at long-term side effects of radiation should be in the library of every radiation oncology department. It details the current scientific understanding of the basis of side effects that are becoming increasingly important as more and more cancers are either cured or transitioned into "chronic disease" status.