Description: This book was last published in 1998 by the founder of the Sjogren's Syndrome Foundation, Elaine Harris, and her physician, Steven Carsons, MD. The handbook is now edited by Daniel Wallace, MD, to provide an easy to read resource about the syndrome for patients, their families, and healthcare professionals. The book is holistic, providing insight into the chronic psychosocial and medical issues that patients face in their daily lives.
Purpose: The purpose is to describe Sjogren's syndrome, update medical information, and address the concerns of patients with the disease. The authors are attempting to improve awareness about the disease, both to the community and medical profession.
Audience: The book is targeted at patients, families, and their healthcare providers. It does an adequate job of conveying essential information. The authors have met their objectives, although some chapters seem to be targeted at the medical community and other chapters are too simplistic for physicians, but appropriate for patients and their families.
Features: The book briefly discusses the history of Sjogren's Syndrome, and then delves into the common signs and symptoms and investigative tools to help aid in diagnosis. There is also a lengthy discussion of treatment modalities for Sicca complaints, and also alternative therapies. The appendixes are well organized, citing references that are useful for physicians. However, patients may find it difficult to get access to these papers, unless they go to a university medical library. The appendix for products for patients is useful as it lists phone numbers and websites to contact for products. There are several well organized tables throughout the book for a quick review of information.
Assessment: This is an interesting blend of information for both patients and rheumatologists. Some of the chapters are complex, with medical jargon that may be difficult for the layperson to understand. However, the book provides a handy resource of information and medications.