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Survivorship: Living Well During and After Cancer
     

Survivorship: Living Well During and After Cancer

5.0 3
by Barrie Cassileth, Ian Yarett
 

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Cancer patients face a daunting world of confusing information about treatment options. They may have heard of using integrative medicine to complement traditional care and alleviate both short- and long-term side effects of cancer treatments, but where do they locate accurate information on acupuncture, massage, yoga, and nutritional therapies?

Overview


Cancer patients face a daunting world of confusing information about treatment options. They may have heard of using integrative medicine to complement traditional care and alleviate both short- and long-term side effects of cancer treatments, but where do they locate accurate information on acupuncture, massage, yoga, and nutritional therapies? Survivorship: Living Well During and After Cancer provides up-to-date evidence-based information on available therapies from Dr. Barrie Cassileth, a leader in integrative cancer treatment and founder of the Integrative Medicine Service at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center. Dr. Cassileth will help patients begin to separate the facts from the hype when considering complementary medicine. A full listing of “anti-quackery” online resources is included.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

From the author:

"Many years ago, I completed a doctorate in medical sociology at the University of Pennsylvania. For my thesis project, I chose to spend a year studying the dynamics of care on the adult leukemia unit of the Penn’s Cancer Center. What I found that year not only became my thesis, it molded my lifelong profession.

I found a world filled with terribly ill adults, mostly young or in their middle years, and I encountered their husbands, wives, parents, and children, all of whom suffered just as much. It became clear to me that more was needed than simply caring for each patient’s leukemia, as difficult and consuming as that was. A host of physical, emotional, and interpersonal problems screamed for attention.

In 1999, I was invited to bring all that I had learned and developed over the previous decades to Memorial Sloan- Kettering Cancer Center, the world’s preeminent cancer hospital, and to create a new kind of department, an Integrative Medicine department. This was an opportunity not only to bring the field to a new plateau, but to produce a program that could be a prototype for other hospitals around the world, and that is exactly what happened. The various elements of our program focus on patients’ needs throughout the full spectrum of their treatment and well beyond. Helping survivors and their loved ones to live strong and stay well is the major goal of what we do. Survivorship from diagnosis on presents new challenges, and survivorship is what this book is about."

— Barrie Cassileth

About Survivorship:

"Barrie Cassileth has spent a long, distinguished career at the intersection of rigorous medical science and integrative medicine, defining ways in which relief of symptoms of the disease and side effects of therapies can improve the quality of life of cancer survivors. No one is better positioned to separate viable therapies from scams. In Survivorship: Living Well During and After Cancer, Dr. Cassileth provides authoritative advice, showing how nutrition, massage, yoga, acupuncture, meditation and physical fitness can play legitimate roles in a comprehensive science-driven strategy for confronting cancer."

-Paul Goldberg, Editor, The Cancer Letter

"As the number of cancer survivors continues to rise, it becomes imperative that we support people to go beyond simply surviving cancer and to start thriving after cancer. A pioneer in the areas of cancer survivorship and integrative oncology, Dr. Cassileth’s new book provides critical information to help support people during and after cancer treatment. Cassileth equips readers with the necessary tools to safely and effectively navigate the abundance of information available to support cancer survivors. Cancer survivors will improve their quality of life and feel better after following the wise advice contained within these pages and they may also live longer."

Dr. Lorenzo Cohen, Professor and Director, Integrative Medicine Program, MD Anderson Cancer Center

"Dr. Cassileth's book Survivorship describes the health behaviors that can be beneficial to cancer patients and survivors, and may improve their outcome. With scientific evidence behind her recommendations, Dr. Cassileth describes the best types of cancer diets, what supplements are safe, what supplements should be avoided as well as talking about the effects of physical activity. Both good nutrition and physical activity can be very beneficial in improving the overall quality of life of cancer patients and improving cancer survival while undergoing chemotherapy. In addition to nutrition and physical activity, Dr. Cassileth focuses on stress and symptom management and talks about the various types of complementary and integrative therapies that could be most helpful to the cancer patient, specifically the mind-body programs that induce the relaxation response, such as meditation, imagery, self-hypnosis expressive arts, music therapy as well as the modified exercise programs such as yoga, tai chi, chi gong and Pilates. Several chapters focus on symptom management by acupuncture, massage and mind-body techniques. This book is a must for the cancer patients as they undergo therapy."

David S. Rosenthal, M.D., Medical Director. Leonard P. Zakim Center for Integrative Therapies, Dana-Farber Cancer Institute, Professor of Medicine, Harvard Medical School

"No life, it seems, is untouched by cancer. Instead of tapping into the collective fear and dread surrounding illness, Survivorship: Living Well During and After Cancer, by Barrie Cassileth, takes a life-affirming approach. The book explores complementary therapies, such as acupuncture, massage, and dietary supplements that improve life for cancer patients … The book gives the basics of each complementary therapy so that cancer patients and their families know what options are available, and then makes that information applicable by answering day-to-day questions that plague cancer patients and reduce quality of life, such as, “What can I do if I’m having trouble sleeping?”…This book destroys the feeling of powerlessness that often comes with cancer by offering sound advice and actionable strategies for improvement. The writing is clear, concise, and well documented—both medically credible and digestible for everyday people. The tone marries a pragmatic, medical slant with a warm, therapeutic approach. In the confusion of diagnosis and treatment, this tone, and its assurance that someone knowledgeable wants to help, is a gift to readers…Cassileth’s thorough, empowering approach showcases her expertise (she’s founder of the Integrative Medicine Service at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center), but more than that, it shows her compassion for those who are suffering or recovering from cancer."

Foreword Reviews

"In 'Survivorship: Living Well during and after Cancer', Barrie Cassileth, PhD, offers a comprehensive overview of evidence-based integrative cancer treatment, providing a welcome resource for patients and their loved ones. Dr. Cassileth provides background on complementary therapies, describing various options and their potential to alleviate symptoms of cancer treatment and including important information about current research related to each topic. Written in a clear, accessible style, the book also provides insight throughout to differentiate effective, evidence-based op­tions from dangerous “alternative” therapies. The result of Dr. Cassileth’s work is a book that is at once easy to understand and backed by considerable research—a valuable resource for anyone facing a cancer diagnosis.”

Women Magazine

"This slender-volume survivorship guidebook provides the latest evidence based information on complementary therapies and is a must-read for both newly diagnosed patients with cancer and survivors living with the short- and long-term side effects of their treatments."

The ASCO Post

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781938170355
Publisher:
Spry Publishing LLC
Publication date:
04/01/2014
Pages:
216
Sales rank:
500,314
Product dimensions:
5.50(w) x 8.30(h) x 0.70(d)

Related Subjects

Read an Excerpt


Preface

Many years ago, I completed a doctorate in medical sociology at the University of Pennsylvania. For my thesis project, I chose to spend a year studying the dynamics of care on the adult leukemia unit of the Penn's Cancer Center, a small cluster of beds adjacent to the Center's research laboratories. What I found that year not only became my thesis, it molded my lifelong profession.

I found a world filled with terribly ill adults, mostly young or in their middle years, and I encountered their husbands, wives, parents, and children, all of whom suffered just as much, knowing that the prolonged and difficult treatments had a small chance of success. Physicians, nurses, and other staff faced similar challenges as they guided their patients through treatment, aware of its limitations and of the gaps in scientific knowledge underlying it.

It became clear to me that more was needed than simply caring for each patient's leukemia, as difficult and consuming as that was. A host of physical, emotional, and interpersonal problems screamed for attention. Identifying them and outlining ways to approach them became my thesis and later a book, The Cancer Patient: Social and Medical Aspects of Care.

After that year, I was asked to stay on to establish a program that could address these issues. We called it the "Psychosocial Program.” Under that rubric we created support services for patients, families, and staff, established the first palliative care and home hospice programs based in an academic medical center, and conducted multiple research studies.

In 1999, I was invited to bring all that I had learned and developed over the previous decades to Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, the world's preeminent cancer hospital, and to create a new kind of department, an Integrative Medicine department. This was an opportunity not only to bring the field to a new plateau, but to produce a program that could be a prototype for other hospitals around the world, and that is exactly what happened. The various elements of our program focus on patients' needs throughout the full spectrum of their treatment and well beyond. Helping survivors and their loved ones to live strong and stay well is the major goal of what we do. Survivorship from diagnosis on presents new challenges, and survivorship is what this book is about.

Barrie Cassileth
October 2, 2013

A Roadmap for Quality Care

Despite the statistics, we tend to believe that cancer happens to other people—those who are older or sicker or have less healthy habits—but not to us. Invariably, it’s not something we are prepared for. A diagnosis of cancer changes everything. It makes us unsure when once we were certain, and the unfairness and scariness of it all hits us and our loved ones hard.

Questions, from the profound to the practical, swirl in our heads: Why me? Could I have done something to prevent this? Is it treatable or curable? Can it be removed through surgery? What side effects will result from any surgery or other treatments? What on earth can I do, should I do, and how will this diagnosis and its treatment affect my life and my family?

This book is designed to help you navigate your options, make informed choices, and maintain the highest quality of life possible during and after this challenging time.

Some General Guidelines for Facing Your Cancer

No matter how resilient a person you are, an unexpected and devastating diagnosis brings about a great deal of uncertainty. It’s entirely normal to feel overwhelmed, anxious, or even angry. Many cancer patients experience a feeling of losing control over their lives and the sense that their autonomy is taking a backseat to the disease. Addressing your physical disease in a way that also allows you to confront the roller coaster of emotions that comes along with it is not only possible, but also essential to your overall wellbeing and that of your family.

Anxiety and uncertainty are reduced when people take an active role in their own treatment and often this also leads to getting the best quality care. When facing cancer, it is true that some elements that may contribute to the final outcome are beyond control, but you can benefit tremendously by taking charge of those choices you do have. You can decide which doctors and hospitals to use. You can take an active and informed role as a partner in decisions about your treatment plan. You can choose to make lifestyle changes such as diet and exercise, which improve health and wellbeing and survival.

Additionally, you can take advantage of various complementary (integrative) therapies that reduce physical and emotional symptoms along the way. Don’t allow the unfortunate challenges of cancer to run the show. With conscious effort you can remain in the driver’s seat of your future. In this book, we will show you how.

Insert SB
Take charge! Here’s what YOU can do:
• Select the best doctors and hospitals for your diagnosis.
• Take an active role in discussions and decisions about your treatment plan.
• Never hesitate to ask questions of your oncology team.
• Make lifestyle changes that improve wellbeing and survival.
• Use complementary (integrative) therapies as adjuncts to mainstream care to control physical and emotional symptoms.
End SB

The remainder of this chapter provides a roadmap for getting the best possible treatment and introduces the promise of complementary medicine and the potential peril of unproven “alternative” methods. Being an educated consumer will help you get the best treatment, and it also will improve both your outlook and how you feel each day.

Your First Steps for Getting Quality Care

There is a critical decision to be made as soon as you receive a questionable test result or perhaps even a tentative cancer diagnosis. Where do you go to confirm the specific diagnosis and receive medical care? You see, where you are diagnosed and treated first can have a major impact on the ultimate outcome, so it is very important to start at a specialized cancer center that sees many patients with your specific condition. Your initial leaning may be to use your community hospital where you feel comfortable, but with a cancer diagnosis, that might not be the best choice. Specialized cancer centers have oncologists with the most expertise and experience in diagnosing and treating your specific problem. If you prefer, when diagnosis and treatment plans are established and initial treatment requiring highly specialized physicians and facilities are completed, you can then take your continuing treatment plan to your local hospital for any ongoing treatments. In cancer, excellence and specialization are keys to success.

Start SB
Cancer Centers
While most, if not all, hospitals provide cancer treatment, specialized cancer centers offer the most highly developed professional care. The National Cancer Act of 1971 designated “cancer centers” as institutions that include excellence in patient care, training and education, research, high-level technologies, and cancer-control research and programs. According to the National Cancer Institute (NCI) website, the model for a cancer center was drawn from the older, free-standing institutions, including Roswell Park, Memorial Sloan-Kettering, M.D. Anderson, and Fox Chase.

In June 1973, NCI described two classes of cancer centers—“comprehensive” and “specialized.” Comprehensive cancer centers conducted long-term, multidisciplinary cancer programs in biomedical research, clinical investigation, training, demonstration, and community-oriented programs in detection, diagnosis, education, epidemiology, rehabilitation, and information exchange. Specialized cancer centers had programs in one or more, but not all, of the above areas.

Thus, NCI-designated comprehensive cancer centers are top-of-the-line, having demonstrated depth and breadth of research, professional and public education, dissemination of clinical and public health advances, and, most importantly, the most knowledgeable, cancer-diagnosis-specific, highest quality patient care.

Meet the Author


Barrie Cassileth, MS, PhD, is Laurance S. Rockefeller Chair and Chief of the Integrative Medicine department at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center (MSKCC) in New York City. Since joining MSKCC in 1999, Dr. Cassileth has established prototypic research, education, and clinical programs in Integrative Medicine. She has an extensive medical leadership career and is a foremost authority on complementary therapies and Integrative Medicine in oncology. Her work includes extensive writings in medical literature, medical textbook chapters, and books for physicians, patients, and families. She was a founding member of the Advisory Council to the U.S. National Institutes of Health Office of Alternative Medicine, now the National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine, served previously on the National and the NY–NJ Regional Boards of the American Cancer Society, and on multiple national and international committees. A staunch opponent of cancer quackery, she is Founding President of the Society for Integrative Oncology.

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Survivorship: Living Well During and After Cancer 5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Cancer, as the preface to this book says, is something we're never prepared for. But this book is an invaluable resource to become as prepared and capable and informed as possible. 
Margo_H More than 1 year ago
I absolutely LOVED this book!! Barrie Cassileth includes SO much helpful information! I went thru this book with a highliter and a pack of postits and will be rereading it for a while I'm sure. My husband is fighting prostate cancer and is having lots of nasty side effects from his treatment that are still occuring at times. I got a lot of ideas about things to bring up with his doctor for him to try, like supplements and meditation and yoga. I liked reading the studies and accounts of patients too. I'm VERY glad that a friend suggested I read this!! A musthave for anyone diagnosed w/ or fighting or in recovery from cancer.  
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is a great resource for anyone who has been affected by cancer. It is full of helpful tips on therapies like yoga, massage and acupuncture, and others. It is easy to understand but includes helpful studies that go into detail about how the treatments are or are not proven to be successful. I was surprised at how much information was included in such a small book, it's really packed full of facts and advice. There are sections for different therapies and also sections that focus on different side effects of treatment and what integrative medicine steps you can take to help with them. I highly recommend this book. - Greg Kissel