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A physicians guide to pain and symptom management in cancer patients. 3rd Edition.

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’This would be a useful textbook for practicing doctors within the palliative care field and also advanced nurse practitioners and oncologists.’

Title: A physicians guide to pain and symptom management in cancer patients. 3rd Edition

Authors: Janet L Abraham, Amanda Moment and Arden O’Donnell

Publisher: Johns Hopkins University Press

Reviewer: Helen Reeves, Clinical Nurse Manager, St Giles Walsall Hospice

What was it like?

A physician’s guide to pain and symptom management in cancer patients is a comprehensive and in depth clinical textbook aimed for practicing doctors. It looks at symptom management within palliative care and also looks at lessons learnt from patients and families. The textbook is divided into two parts, part one Hidden concerns, unmasked questions and part two, pain control, symptom management and palliative care. At the end there are bibliographies for both clinicians and patients and family members.

What were the highlights?

A well-researched textbook that drawers on lots of aspects of symptom management in palliative care. Although primarily focused on symptom management and predominantly pain in patients with cancer chapter 9 focuses on managing other distressing symptoms such as psychological problems, skin problems and gastrointestinal problems. I also admire the chapter on sexuality, intimacy and cancer. This is often a topic that many find difficulty in approaching but one that has been addressed well within this chapter.

Strengths & weaknesses:

The textbook is geared to US audience, which means that some medications suggested within the textbook would not be of first use within palliative care in the UK. Although a thoroughly comprehensive and in depth text book the size is quite daunting and the content quite wordy. However, the focus of patient and family experience and the way that this has influenced the third edition is a massive strength. I particularly like the bibliography at the back of the book that has been designed for patients and family members and find this a positive step forward.

Who should read it?

This would be a useful textbook for practicing doctors within the palliative care field and also advanced nurse practitioners and oncologists. Would be a useful textbook to have as part of a large resource on this area.

a physician's guide to pain and symptom

a physician’s guide to pain and symptom

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