Your Medical Mind: How to Decide What Is Right for You

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Overview


An entirely new way to make the best medical decisions.

Making the right medical decisions is harder than ever. We are overwhelmed by information from all sides—whether our doctors’ recommendations, dissenting experts, confusing statistics, or testimonials on the Internet. Now Doctors Groopman and Hartzband reveal that each of us has a “medical mind,” a highly individual approach to weighing the risks and benefits of treatments.  Are you a minimalist or a maximalist, a ...

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Your Medical Mind: How to Decide What Is Right for You

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Overview


An entirely new way to make the best medical decisions.

Making the right medical decisions is harder than ever. We are overwhelmed by information from all sides—whether our doctors’ recommendations, dissenting experts, confusing statistics, or testimonials on the Internet. Now Doctors Groopman and Hartzband reveal that each of us has a “medical mind,” a highly individual approach to weighing the risks and benefits of treatments.  Are you a minimalist or a maximalist, a believer or a doubter, do you look for natural healing or the latest technology?  The authors weave vivid narratives of real patients with insights from recent research to demonstrate the power of the medical mind. After reading this groundbreaking book, you will know how to arrive at choices that serve you best.

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Editorial Reviews

From Barnes & Noble

Making medical decisions is more difficult than ever. With the omnipresent Internet, conflicting media reports, and aggressive professional marketers, information is everywhere, but how does an average person cut through the glut and make the right choice for themselves or a loved one. This book, co-authored by bestselling author Dr. Jerome Groopman (How Doctors Think), is designed to shepherd family members through the generally stressful process of evaluating options and making a decision that everyone, including the patient, can live with.

BOSTON GLOBE

Your Medical Mind is a welcome and overdue comprehensive exploration of the patient’s perspective as he or she navigates the dizzying array of choices modern medicine presents.”

NPR.org
Part psychological study and part self-help book, Your Medical Mind doesn't provide answers but, rather, insights into navigating the increasingly daunting and dysfunctional world of medicine.
WALL STREET JOURNAL

“A welcome guide for those who are daunted by the choices they face, ranging from taking a cholesterol-lowering drug to making end-of-life decisions for a loved one.”

THE NEW YORK TIMES BOOK REVIEW (Daniel J. Levitin)

"You’ll close the book with an entirely new attitude and set of tools for making medical decisions… Groopman and Hartzband’s important book will help doctor and patient learn how each of us navigates our own tolerance for risk, thus improving outcomes on both sides of the examination table."

Boston Globe
Your Medical Mind is a welcome and overdue comprehensive exploration of the patient’s perspective as he or she navigates the dizzying array of choices modern medicine presents.
Daniel J. Levitin
Your Medical Mind, a kind of sequel to Groopman's 2007 best seller, How Doctors Think, aims to empower patients to become active participants, indeed negotiators, in decisions about their health care…I suspect insurance companies, H.M.O.'s and more than a few doctors are going to hate this book…Groopman and Hartzband understand our psychological need for first-person stories, illustrating their statistical points with vivid case histories, including their own…You'll close the book with an entirely new attitude and set of tools for making medical decisions.
—The New York Times Book Review
Publishers Weekly
Groopman proved himself an exceptional guide to the inner workings of the doctor's mind in his bestselling How Doctors Think. Now he and Hartzband, his wife and colleague at Harvard Medical School, get inside the patient's mind. The result is a chronicle of how ordinary people, landing at a medical crossroads, must decide about care, who should provide it, and for how long. They present tales of patients who must face conflicting information or uncertain outcomes and choose a course of action: a consultant finds his usual "objective” reasoning doesn't apply to the decision to undergo a bone-marrow transplant with possibly debilitating side effects; and a dying woman's change of mind about end-of-life care illustrates how unpredictable our response to death can be. The authors also illustrate the toll illness takes on a patients' loved ones as they strive to make decisions for incapacitated relatives. There are no easy answers here, no prescriptions for the "right” decision, but rather an illuminating look at how different people think about their options and the emotions and experiences that help shape their decisions. This remarkable survey can help make the uncertainty of illness and treatment seem just a bit more manageable and less lonely.(Sept.)
Library Journal
New Yorker staff writer, New York Times best-selling author, and oncologist Groopman (Harvard Medical Sch.; How Doctors Think) and endocrinologist Hartzband (Harvard Medical Sch.) present readers with a fascinating look into medical decision making. Through detailed portraits of socially and ethnically diverse real-life individuals who must make medical choices, the authors show how patients' family history, culture, profession, and attitudes toward medicine and technology can shape their decisions about treatment. The book's liberal use of stories and detailed description makes for richer insights than can be gleaned from the short, stylized cases that fill many books on medical ethics. The authors' approach also reveals how medical decision making and patient preferences can change over time. VERDICT This engaging, insightful, and illuminating book should be read by general audiences as well as medical and health-care professionals, who are often baffled by the choices their patients make.—Aaron Klink, Duke Univ., Durham, NC
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780143122241
  • Publisher: Penguin Group (USA)
  • Publication date: 8/28/2012
  • Pages: 320
  • Sales rank: 203,701
  • Product dimensions: 5.40 (w) x 8.40 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author


Jerome Groopman, MD, and Pamela Hartzband, MD, are on the faculty of Harvard Medical School and on the staff of Boston’s Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center. They have collaborated on articles for The New York Times, The Wall Street Journal, and the New England Journal of Medicine.
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Table of Contents

Introduction 1

1 Where Am I in the Numbers? 9

2 Believers and Doubters 31

3 But is it Best for Me? 49

4 Regret 69

5 Neighborly Advice 87

6 Autonomy and Coping 113

7 Decision Analysis Meets Reality 137

8 End of Life 153

9 When the Patient Can't Decide 185

Conclusion 211

Acknowledgments 219

Notes 223

Selected Bibliography 281

Index 301

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 6 Customer Reviews
  • Posted December 30, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Sober and reasoned guidance for difficult medical decisons

    In this book one will not find quick tips and definitive advice for making difficult medical decisions. What one will find, however, is a very articulate, well reasoned, and compelling case for why incontrovertible facts are elusive in modern medicine. The authors state and prove brilliantly the necessary subjectivity of medical decisions. While this book will surely not give comfort to those seeking hard and fast answers, it does provide a pathway for considering and coping with difficult decisions.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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