When Blood Breaks Down - Life Lessons from Leukemia
When Blood Breaks Down - Life Lessons from Leukemia by Mikkael A. Sekeres, MD
MIT Press, April 2020, Hardcover, 328 Pages
In When Blood Breaks Down, Dr. Mikkael Sekeres, a leading cancer specialist, takes readers on a journey that patient and doctor travel together. Sekeres tells the compelling stories of three people who receive diagnoses of adult leukemia within hours of each other: Joan, a 48-year-old surgical nurse, a caregiver who becomes a patient; David, a 68-year-old former factory worker who bows to his family's wishes and pursues the most aggressive treatment; and Sarah, a 36-year-old pregnant woman who must decide whether to undergo chemotherapy and put her fetus at risk. We join the intimacy of the conversations Sekeres has with his patients, and watch as he teaches trainees. Along the way, Sekeres also explores leukemia in its different forms and the development of drugs to treat it—describing, among many other fascinating details, the invention of the bone marrow transplant and a treatment that targets the genetics of leukemia. The lessons to be learned from leukemia, Sekeres shows, are not merely medical; they teach us about courage and grace and defying the odds.
For more information: https://mitpress.mit.edu/books/when-blood-breaks-down
The Perks of Having Cancer: An Inspirational, Positive and Humorous View of a Not-So-Inspirational, Positive or Humorous Situation
The Perks of Having Cancer: An Inspirational, Positive and Humorous View of a Not-So-Inspirational, Positive or Humorous Situation by Diana Bosse (Author), Steve Wallace (Illustrator)
Chilidog Press LLC, Paperback , October 2019, 232 pages
A poignant, witty and laugh-out-loud funny journal of the day-to-day discoveries, surprises, and indignities of battling cancer. When Diana Bosse was given the news of her lymphoma diagnosis, she promised herself that she would stay positive throughout her journey to improve her chances of survival. With humor, inspirational quotes and occasional religious references, she began posting daily “Perks of Having Cancer.” By sharing her own experiences, she resolved to also lift the spirits of others dealing with cancer or helping a loved one fight the disease.
Author’s website: https://www.dianabosse.com
Voices of Cancer: What We Really Want, What We Really Need - Insights for Patients and the People Supporting Them
Voices of Cancer: What We Really Want, What We Really Need - Insights for Patients and the People Supporting Them by Lynda Wolters
Mascot Books, October 2019, Hardcover (160 pages) and Kindle
Voices of Cancer offers a candid look into the world of a cancer patient, informed by Lynda’s own story (as a Mantle Cell Lymphoma patient) and conversations she had with dozens of patients weighing in on their needs, wants, and dislikes as they navigate the complex world of diagnosis, treatment, and beyond. With comprehensive and accessible insight from people who’ve been there, Voices of Cancer helps educate, dispel fears, and start positive conversations about what a cancer diagnosis truly means, while shining a light on how best to support a loved one on their own terms.
Hundred Percent Chance: A Memoir
Hundred Percent Chance: A Memoir by Robert K. Brown
3/3 Press 2019, 273 Pages, Paperback or Kindle
Hundred Percent Chance: A Memoir is a raw and realistic memoir about a young college student who was diagnosed with Acute Myeloid Leukemia in 1990 while he was studying abroad in Lancaster, England – halfway across the world from his home in Seattle. From battling life-threatening symptoms during a rushed, emergency departure from England, through multiple rounds of chemotherapy and complications over the next eight months, this moving, page-turning story will remind you to make the most of every day.
For more information: www.hundredpercentchance.com
The Long Road Back to Boston: Running Marathons with Leukemia
The Long Road Back to Boston: Running Marathons with Leukemia by Phillip Fields, PhD
Published by BookBaby, July 2019, Paperback, 322 pages (also available as e-book)
What we do when confronted with bad news defines who we are and what we will be from that moment forward. In 2008, an oncologist told Dr. Fields, "You have leukemia, a five-to-seven year life expectancy, and stop running marathons." What he did next made his diagnosis only life-changing and not life-shattering. Between February 2009 and December 2012, he ran a marathon in every state and DC (51 marathons/47 months). His accomplishment is a testament that a diagnosis is not the end of life; it is only the beginning. Interwoven with his story of running with leukemia are stories of his loves, losses, travel, and embarrassing childhood memories.
The Scars, Aligned (A Cancer Narrative)
The Scars, Aligned (A Cancer Narrative) by Brad Buchanan
Finishing Line Press, 2019, Paperback 93 pages
The Scars, Aligned follows the author's journey through the many phases of a cancer patient’s experience and interweaves lines of famous poetry. He covers feelings of uncertainty, paranoia, diagnosis, acceptance, expectancy, crisis, treatment, and finally recovery. The narrative working through these poems is a powerful and universal one, but the details of an intensely lived physical and emotional ordeal make this book far more than a mere succession of unfortunate events.
Sending - An Athlete Confronting Cancer
Sending - An Athlete Confronting Cancer by Jennifer Erin Pinkus
Blurb.com and Dorrance Publishing, 2018
ISBN: 978-0-36-803943-0 Softcover, 178 Pages
ISBN: 978-1-6470-2653-0 Ebook
SENDING is a generic term for successfully completing a vertical rock or ice climb. Jennifer Erin Pinkus approached her struggle against cancer with the determination and emotional strength she used when tackling the most challenging mountain. When Jen received a diagnosis of lymphoma, she decided to start a daily journal describing her experience with hair loss, “chemo brain,” metallic tastes and insurance coverage. Her talent for using the written word in prose and poetry to describe coping with this horrific illness is raw and honest. It shows Jen’s courage as she faces her fears, the unknown and finally death.
How Steve Became Ralph: A Cancer/Stem Cell Odyssey (with Jokes)
How Steve Became Ralph: A Cancer/Stem Cell Odyssey (with Jokes) by Steve Buechler
Written Dreams Publishing, 2018
ISBN: 978-1-7335034-2-6 Paperback, 232 pages
ISBN: 978-1-7335034-1-9 Hardcover, 174 pages
ISBN: 978-1-7335034-3-3 Ebook
Upon receiving a diagnosis of acute myeloid leukemia, Steve Buechler began telling his story with an email to his neighbors. Over the ensuing months, he composed over sixty such reports for an ever-expanding group of recipients. With the addition of a preface on lessons learned and an epilogue on identity changes, this compelling account documents and reflects upon his diagnosis, treatment, and recovery, including a detailed account of the stem cell transplant that saved his life.
Consider It Pure Joy
Consider It Pure Joy by Jennifer Jones Austin
Published by The Church Online LLC, February 2018, Paperback, 217 pages (also available as e-book)
Author Jennifer Jones Austin - wife, mother, lawyer, child advocate and the picture of good health - finds herself with an acute form of leukemia that requires a bone marrow transplant to increase her chances of survival. The story recounts how Jennifer, her family and friends, are in a race against time as she fights cancer and searches for a bone marrow donor to cure her and others of the deadly disease. With scripture and bible verses, Jennifer describes how her power of faith, and her power of community, help to transform desperation into joy.
My Journey with Leukemia: The Power of Family, Faith, and Humor
My Journey with Leukemia: The Power of Family, Faith, and Humor By Jennifer Venegas
Published by Outskirts Press, 2018, 175 pages
This book outlines the personal journey of 45 year old Jennifer Venegas who was diagnosed with Ph-positive Acute Lymphoblastic Leukemia. Jennifer chronicles her daily experience as she undergoes chemotherapy and an allogeneic transplant, then deals with Graft vs Host Disease (GVHD). From a faith-based perspective, she describes the realities of managing her treatment, her changing roles, and the financial impact of her cancer diagnosis.
Living with Cancer - A Step-by-Step Guide for Coping Medically and Emotionally with a Serious Diagnosis
Living with Cancer - A Step-by-Step Guide for Coping Medically and Emotionally with a Serious Diagnosis by Vicki A. Jackson, MD, MPH, David P. Ryan, MD and Michelle D. Seaton.
Johns Hopkins University Press, 2017, 351 pages
ISBN 1421422328 Hardcover (also available in paperback and e-book)
Doctors Vicki A. Jackson and David P. Ryan have crafted a step-by-step guide aimed at helping people with cancer grasp what’s happening to them while coping physically and emotionally with treatment. It is a practical, easy to read and comprehensive reference covering everything from understanding one’s diagnosis to managing symptoms and side effects and dealing with end of life concerns.
For more information: https://www.press.jhu.edu/
Into the Funhouse: An Unpredictable Story of a Relentless Leukemia
Into the Funhouse: An Unpredictable Story of a Relentless Leukemia By Walter Harp
LS Publishing; First edition, 2016, 280 pages
Author begins his narrative with- "I should have died more than once. Yet I remain alive (at least for now), as can anyone with cancer, regardless of how dreadful the prognosis. People do beat the odds." What unfolds on the following pages is a story of life. Yes, Harp is diagnosed with a life-threatening and often debilitating disease, but ordinary daily life has a way of creeping in, and Harp relays it all beautifully. Between snippets about diagnostic tests, treatments, fear, and the challenges of acceptance, there is the wonderfully mundane. Passages about everyday living while your body is hurting make his story relatable.
Night Reflections: A True Story of Friendship, Love, Cancer, and Survival
Night Reflections: A True Story of Friendship, Love, Cancer, and Survival By Robert Thomas Winn (Author) and Timothy R. Pearson (Contributor)
Humanix Books, 2016 , 380 pages
Life was near perfect for Dr. Robert Winn, medical director of Deer Valley and The Canyons in Park City, and his beloved wife Nancy. But when, seemingly out of the blue, Nancy was diagnosed with the life threatening disease Acute Myeloid Leukemia, their world went tumbling and careening out of control. Because Dr. Winn could not speak of Nancy's illness without getting choked up or crying, he started the almost nightly ritual of sending letters to friends and family about Nancy. An elegant and introspective writer, and medical expert, these messages chronicle an inspirational story of courage, love, devotion, struggle, and ultimately triumph. Night Reflections will help anyone suffering from a devastating illness, their loved ones, caregivers, and the medical community alike find the strength to face even the darkest of days.
And in Health: A Guide for Couples Facing Cancer Together
And in Health: A Guide for Couples Facing Cancer Together by Dan Shapiro
ISBN-10: 161180017X ISBN-13: 978-1611800173
Engaging and digestible lessons for couples navigating the life changes brought about by a cancer diagnosis. Dan Shapiro draws on his more than twenty-five years of clinical work as a health psychologist who has researched and worked with couples facing cancer, and on his own experiences of being both the patient (having and beating Hodgkin's lymphoma in his twenties) and the supporter/advocate (when his wife was diagnosed with breast cancer) to weave together insights on facing cancer while maintaining a strong relationship. And in Health gives advice in short lessons on the main areas of concern or conflict that can come from life with cancer-from diagnosis to treatment and life post-treatment. Topics include: How to forge yourselves into a powerful team and avoid common conflict points Dealing with physicians and getting the best care possible, along with tips for navigating the medical world Strategies for coping with the emotions that can interfere with your relationship-anger, mood swings, spouse fears, and depression Distinguishing between supportive and draining people in your lives, and learning to invite and accept help Opening to new types of intimacy and making peace with dependence
How to Cope Better When You Have Cancer
How to Cope Better When You Have Cancer by William Penzer
Esperence Press, 2012
ISBN-10: 0983501718 ISBN-13: 978-0983501718
Dr. William Penzer's journey through what he came to call Cancerville began in 2005 when his 31-year-old daughter was diagnosed with breast cancer. Despite being a caring and seasoned psychologist for almost forty years who helped others navigate the choppy waters of life, he was emotionally drowning in that very sea. He searched for a book to help support him during this difficult time but found none. As he learned how to adapt and cope in Cancerville, he promised himself he would write a helpful book someday to support family and friends facing that same situation. In fact, he did and How to Cope Better When Someone You Love Has Cancer, for the people he calls heart and soul givers was published in January 2012. Cancer patients who read that one urged him to write this one.
The Lovin' Ain't Over for Women With Cancer
The Lovin' Ain't Over for Women with Cancer by Barbara Alterowitz & Ralph Alterowitz
ISBN-10: 192916324X ISBN-13: 978-1929163243
Treatment for breast, gynecological and other cancer can have a devastating effect on sexuality. The Lovin' Ain't Over for Women with Cancer is a guide to overcoming the sexual difficulties, written by a husband-and wife team of certified sexuality counselors who has dealt with cancer in their own lives. They explain the effects of different cancer therapies on a woman's sexual function, lay out the 4-step AIDA system for regaining your sense of self, and provide a roadmap to rebuilding your sex life. Written in plain, frank language, this is a reader-friendly, proactive, practical and optimistic guide for women and couples struggling with sexual difficulties after cancer. The goal is to help readers cope and take the necessary action to make their sex lives as vibrant, vital, and fulfilling as they would like.
"Whoever you are and no matter what your situation may be, you will be able to find yourself in this book. The Lovin' Ain't Over For Women With Cancer can be viewed as a guide to better living through making informed choices regarding your relationships as well as by maneuvering some of the choices during treatment." -Dr. Joycelyn Elders. former U.S. Surgeon General.
Coping with the Emotional Impact of Cancer: Become an Active Patient and Take Charge of Your Treatment
Coping with the Emotional Impact of Cancer: Become an Active Patient and Take Charge of Your Treatment By Neil Fiore
Bay Tree Publishing, 2009, 178 Pages
ISBN-10: 0980175836 ISBN-13: 978-0980175837
The author of this book is a 30-year survivor of a terminal cancer diagnosis, dramatically demonstrates how patients can maintain personal control of their lives while subject to sometimes harsh treatments. Offering hope and reassurance, Fiore provides practical tools for: managing the initial shock at receiving a cancer diagnosis, lessening stress and worry, combating depression, preparing your body for treatment, and living a rich full life with cancer despite the fear and possibility of recurrence. The author shares practical techniques for coping with the emotional and physical impact of this life-threatening disease. He shows how to establish team relationships with doctors and therapists, communicate with family and friends, and deal with feelings of helplessness. The book offers guidance in building emotional support systems with physicians, family and friends.
Fighting Cancer with Knowledge and Hope: A Guide for Patients, Families, and Health Care Providers
Fighting Cancer with Knowledge and Hope: A Guide for Patients, Families, and Health Care Providers by Richard C. Frank, M.D.
Yale University Press, 2009, 257 pages
Anyone who is diagnosed with cancer receives a frightening blow, and in many cases the diagnosis is accompanied by a bewildering array of treatment choices. In this invaluable book, Dr. Richard C. Frank offers comfort and help to cancer patients, their families, and their caretakers. Dr. Frank empowers patients by unlocking the mysteries of the disease and explaining in plain language the ways to confront and combat it. An award-winning medical oncologist recognized for his humanitarian approach as well as his research accomplishments, Dr. Frank understands that cancer patients and their families need insight into the disease along with a sense of control. He therefore addresses these vital topics: what cancer is and how it spreads how cancer treatment strategies are chosen how cancer-fighting drugs work to shut down the growth of the disease which factors affect a patient's prognosis how patients can visualize cancer treatments at work in the body and why this is helpful how to deal with "uncurable" cancer and more. With a wealth of patient case histories, helpful coping strategies from cancer survivors, and up-to-date information on useful resources, Fighting Cancer is the book cancer patients and their loved ones can turn to with confidence and hope. Richard C. Frank, M.D., is director of cancer research, Whittingham Cancer Center, Norwalk Hospital, Norwalk, CT, and medical director, Mid-Fairfield Hospice, Wilton, CT. He lives in Fairfield, CT.
Author's website: http://richardfrankmd.com/frankpages/frank.html
Cancer Etiquette: What to Say, What to Do When Someone You Know or Love Has Cancer
Cancer Etiquette: What to Say, What to Do When Someone You Know or Love Has Cancer By Rosanne Kalick
Lion Books Publisher, 2005, 146 pages
Have you ever been at a loss for words when a friend or colleague or a loved one has been given a diagnosis of cancer? Have you ever wanted to do something "nice" for a person who is being treated for cancer and not known exactly what would be appropriate? This book contains myriad suggestions for saying and acting on the most helpful, compassionate and appropriate responses and explains why they are. Rosanne Kalick's valuable contributions are drawn from her personal experiences dealing with cancer not once, but twice. This unique position empowered her to conduct intense research, personal interviews and to use letters and emails from cancer patients all over the world. (Atlas Books) About the Author: Rosanne Kalick - Although cancer has changed the author's life, it has not changed who she is. While she no longer jogs (she had completed three New York City Marathons), she is an avid walker. She is particularly gifted in her ability to communicate, having been a professor and chairperson of the Library and Learning Resource Center at Westchester Community College in New York. She ultimately received the State University Chancellor's Award for Excellence in Librarianship. (Atlas Books)
Diagnosis Cancer: Your Guide to the First Few Months of Healthy Survivorship, Expanded and Updated
Diagnosis Cancer: Your Guide to the First Few Months of Healthy Survivorship, Expanded and Updated By Wendy Schlessel Harpham, M.D.
W.W. Norton, 2003, 262 pages
The author, a physician and cancer survivor, guides patients through the first few frightening months after diagnosis. An easy-to-read format, up-to-date basic information and advice is presented on the physical, emotional and practical challenges of evaluation and treatment. This new edition includes Harpham's Decision Tool, a unique grid that helps people make informed treatment decisions in collaboration with their healthcare team.
Handbook for Mortals: Guidance for People Facing Serious Illness
Handbook for Mortals: Guidance for People Facing Serious Illness By Joanne Lynn, M.D. and Joan Harrold, M.D.
Oxford University Press, 2001, 256 pages
Designed for caregivers as well as patients, this book combines insight and inspiration with practical information and suggestions for coping with critical illness in all its physical and emotional complexity. Topics include accepting a new lifestyle, controlling pain, getting help and grieving. There is also a section that explores the question of when to let go of pursuing uncomfortable treatments in favor of making a positive choice about how to live near the end of life.
Live Longer, Live Larger: A Holistic Approach for Cancer Patients and their Families
Live Longer, Live Larger: A Holistic Approach for Cancer Patients and their Families By William M. Buchholz, M.D., and Susan W. Buchholz, Ph.D.
O' Reilly & Associates, Inc., 2001, 389 pages
Through years of practice as a hematologist/oncologist/psychologist team, the Buchholz's have helped people to construct strategies for dealing with life-threatening illness. Addressing medical and psychological issues, this book includes stories, exercises and tools to help patients live "longer" and more meaningfully, regardless of prognosis or stage of disease.
The Human Side of Cancer: Living with Hope, Coping with Uncertainty
The Human Side of Cancer: Living with Hope, Coping with Uncertainty Jimmie C. Holland, M.D., and Sheldon Lewis
HarperCollins, 2000, 340 pages
Provides practical and compassionate guidance for dealing with the uncertainty of a cancer diagnosis. Dr. Holland, who chaired the Department Psychiatry at Sloan-Kettering, dispels societal myths and beliefs about coping with cancer, from diagnosis, through treatment and beyond.
After Cancer: A Guide to Your New Life
After Cancer: A Guide to Your New Life By Wendy Schlessel Harpham, M.D., and Robert Jones, Editor
HarperCollins Publishers, 1995, 299 pages
The author, a cancer survivor herself, understands that surviving cancer is more than just killing cancer cells and getting through treatment. She explores the practical issues and the psychosocial elements of recovery after cancer treatment that includes the emotional, social, spiritual and financial fallout of a cancer diagnosis. By helping survivors understand that they can't go back to where they were before cancer, Dr. Harpham encourages people to move forward to a different, "new normal."
For more information: www.wendyharpham.com