ROGER GRANET, M.D., F.A.P.A., is a consulting psychiatrist at Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center, Clinical Professor of Psychiatry at Weill Medical College of Cornell University, a lecturer in psychiatry at Columbia University College of Physicians and Surgeons, and an attending physician at New York Presbyterian Hospital and Morristown Memorial Hospital. He maintains private practices in New York City and Morristown, New Jersey.
This user-friendly guide to surviving a cancer diagnosis and the ensuing treatment will be enormously helpful to patient and their intimates. A consulting psychiatrist at Memorial Sloan-Kettering, Granet provides a wealth of information about many types of cancers and treatments such as surgery, radiation, chemotherapy, and bone marrow transplants. But his central focus is the emotional toll of all aspects of the disease and the importance of seeking support from many of the available resources to cope successfully. While Granet gives no credence to the theory that particular personality traits contribute to cancer, he does insist that a patient's emotional well-being improves her quality of life. In order to maintain emotional health, he recommends strategies for copying after diagnosis, and during and after treatment (one patient struggles with "the endless waiting" leading up to and following tests and treatments). He addresses the fear of recurrence and death. Since the needs and preferences of cancer patients differ, he recommends a variety of workable techniques, based on compelling case histories, such as counseling, participation in support groups and a renewed reliance on caretaking by friends and family. He also believes that all patients benefit from acknowledging their difficult emotions rather them blurring them with alcohol or drugs; indeed, in his customarily compassionate, calm manner, readers will sense that he does not turn away from difficult feelings and fears. He does, though, advocate pain medication as an important tool when appropriate. Nothing that cancer survivors often gain deeper spiritual values and emotional maturity, the author sees the possibility of strength and grace where people often expect humiliation and dysfunction. (Oct.) (Publishers Weekly, September 3, 2001)
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