Monday, September 23, 2013


The subtitle of this book is "Coping with Parkinson's Disease."  Since my husband was diagnosed with Parkinson's about eight years ago, I was happy to win the book from LibraryThing.  The cover blurb by Dr. Hubert H. Fernandez of the Cleveland Clinic says, "A must-read for all whose lives are touched by this illness."  I can agree with that.

This is a kind of basic guidebook for patients and caregivers that comes in handy because you never remember everything your neurologist tells you, and of course the doctor's time is limited.   There is a glossary in back as well for terms you might be unfamiliar with.  Since I was a medical transcriptionist, you would think I'd have no use for it, but I do.  I've forgotten some things since I retired, but also there are always new terms coming up and new findings about this disease.

Dr. Friedman updated the text for this second edition of the book so it is nearly up to date in its valuable information.  The chapters focus on symptoms such as fatigue, apathy, anxiety, sleep, driving, and many other problems we face.  Not only does he describe these problems but also explains what medications or other treatments have been tried, whether they worked, and what the patient and caregiver can do for themselves.  I found this very helpful.

One topic I was thankful to read about was what to do if you need to go to the hospital.  He reminds us that most doctors and nurses at hospitals aren't too well versed in how to care for Parkinson's patients so the caregiver needs to be firm about medication schedules and other needs to prevent big problems, even going so far as to have them call your neurologist to confirm what you're telling them.  Patients have been treated for stroke simply because the E.R. staff didn't recognize Parkinson's symptoms for what they really are.  This is important.

I will keep this book handy as years go by.  We frequently have questions that we can easily answer with Dr. Friedman's book rather than wait for the next appointment with the neurologist.

Highly recommended for PD patients and caregivers
Source:  LibraryThing win

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