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All in My Head: An Epic Quest to Cure an Unrelenting, Totally Unreasonable, and Only Slightly Enlightening Headache Paperback – Bargain Price, March 13, 2006
"When Breath Becomes Air" by Paul Kalanithi
For readers of Atul Gawande, Andrew Solomon, and Anne Lamott, a profoundly moving, exquisitely observed memoir by a young neurosurgeon faced with a terminal cancer diagnosis who attempts to answer the question - What makes a life worth living? Learn more | See related books
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From Publishers Weekly
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
"Essential reading for anyone who suffers from chronic pain or...enjoys a dash of wit in their memoir-reading." -- Bookslut, September 2006
"Exhaustively researched, comprehensive in its cultural analysis, effectively organized, and well, a riot." -- Book Review Digest, December 2006
"Exhaustively researched, comprehensive in its cultural analysis, effectively organized, engagingly written, and, well, a riot." -- Womens Review of Books, May/June 2006
"Kamen describes her descent into headache hell with verve and wit.... Her prose is a pleasure.... A must read." -- Boston Globe
"Sufferers will find plenty to learn from here...[This] story hasn't been told before." -- Midwest Book Review, September 2006
Â"Offers a broad look at chronic painÂ A Âmust readÂÂ with self-deprecating humor and razor sharp reporting.Â" -- Nursing Spectrum, 6/19/06
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Top Customer Reviews
It is not a pretty journey she is forced to undertake. Kamen escorts her reader through the decade and a half of her headache hell, but somehow manages to do it (unbelievably!) with a quirky, never-give-in sense of humor. It is not an exaggeration to say that, in reading this book, you might well be doing a lot of crying and a lot of laughing.
The number of shills, quacks, charlatans, and snake-oil salesmen who parade throughout the chapters will give you a jolt. But the book is a lot more: Kamen spends a lot of time looking at how chronic pain, when it is not able to be quickly and successfully treated, starts creating resentment in the minds of medical professionals, in the minds of the families of chronic-pain sufferers, and (most tragically) in the minds of chronic-pain sufferers themselves.
Much more than just a memoir of a single person's frustrations and travails, this book also offers a broad look at chronic pain in the United States today. Kamen has done her scientific research, and shares it (without going overboard or turning her book into a medical study) generously if compactly with her readers. The appendix of resources at the end of the book is particularly helpful, as is the bibliography.
Like a pissed-off Joan of Arc, Kamen spends "All In My Head" wading in the medical, cultural, and social quagmire into which chronic-pain sufferers slowly sink, and, from the first page to the last, she's fighting. This book is a must-read for those with chronic pain, and highly recommended for their friends and families. In Paula Kamen they have found a co-traveler and ally.
If you suffer from ANY kind of chronic pain- do yourself a favor and read this book. For the millions of us who have been used as lab rats by the pharmaceutical industry- Ms. Kamen's book offers insight that can help you find your own voice again.
Some have criticized Kamen for not giving some medical treatments enough time to work. When in constant pain, it's difficult to invest too much time when the side effects add more pain or cause other troubling issues. Taking a few weeks alone for something to work is a lifetime to a chronic pain sufferer.
Kamen does a thorough job of providing details about her medical background and exploring the stigma attached to migraine sufferers and others afflicted with chronic pain. And kudos to Kamen for fighting the pain and coming to peace with it as well as sharing her journey with us!
However, I feel this could probably have been about half as long and still have been effective. At times I felt like I didn't need quite as many details about almost each and every appointment. I also someone expected the book to me a bit more of a memoir. I would have liked to hear more about the author's life in general, not just the bits and pieces here and there included. She is an interesting woman and I think others would be interested in more than just her medical life.
Overall, a good contribution to the field of medical memoirs.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
If you're dealing with migraines/headaches or other chronic pain, this is a great read. It helps you remember that you're not alone, and that other people are going through crazy... Read morePublished 2 months ago by Alanna Burke
Liked it a lot, although at times her slog through alternative medicine did become to feel a little tedious. Read morePublished 16 months ago by R Kanakia
The best part of this book (the bit about marbles) was STOLEN from Christine Miserandino's, "Spoon Theory"
Google "Spoon Theory"... Read more
Excellent book and helped me understand what my 16 year old daughter has endured for over a year now. Read morePublished on August 14, 2013 by Brian C Hurley
I've had a chronic daily headache since I was 12, with headaches starting when I was 6. This was a difficult book for me to read, partially because it was just so right on. Read morePublished on January 25, 2013 by Ariella
The book came as shown or as it was described, the shipping was a little slow but it was ok I was not in a rush. Thanks it has been a lot of help.Published on January 23, 2013 by rocio luna
Amazingly informative, resolutely empowering and surprisingly touching memoir. I'm dying to know if Komen has continued her research on the neurological causes of severe headache... Read morePublished on October 3, 2012 by Amazon Customer
I read this because I am myself was sufferer of chronic daily headache. Mine started without warning, like hers, on October 13, 2010, and lasted for fifteen months. Read morePublished on September 3, 2012 by Meaghan
When someone suffers with chronic pain and/or illness, it feels the world is out there and we are stuck in here... ALONE. As Ms. Read morePublished on August 20, 2012 by Laura from Virginia