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From The CriticsReviewer: Steve C. Lee, MD (Rush University Medical Center)
Description: "This work has the appearance of a textbook but is actually more of a study of the mind and life of the author. The book is divided into three parts. The first part essentially reads as Dr. Goldstein's memoirs and philosophies on medical practice. The second part is his distillation of information gathered from neuroscience conferences and journals. Lastly, Dr. Goldstein expounds on specific medications, neurotransmitters, etc. "
Purpose: The author's previous books have outlined his approach to neurosomatic illnesses such as chronic fatigue, IBS, fibromyalgia, etc. He acknowledges that his past books have been difficult to read. This title is an attempt to make his knowledge more accessible. These are worthy objectives but this book remains impenetrable for the non-academic physician.
Audience: Only those well-versed in the neurosciences can digest, agree with, or reject the book's contents. Otherwise, one is left with little more than myopic faith that the contents are scientifically reasonable. The author's credibility is based on his practice of exclusively treating patients with chronic fatigue syndrome and on his obvious intelligence. However, it is easy to see how his theories are controversial and questionable and his rambling nature does not aid in his cause.
Features: Frankly, the book is of more value as entertainment than as education. There is even a section in which the author assumes the voice of his wife and laments his chaotic lifestyle. The appendix contains a flowchart listing drugs in the author's armament. Oversimplification renders the algorithm useless, but it may be the only portal into an otherwise incoherent sea of theories.
Assessment: If I ever choose to revisit this book, it will merely be in the context of a voyeuristic study into the mind and life of a savant.