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"Chronic illness doesn't come with an instruction manual," says Susan Milstrey Wells--so she wrote one. Afflicted with Sjögren's syndrome (an autoimmune disease that dries the eyes and mouth), fibromyalgia (a painful muscle disorder), and interstitial cystitis (a chronic inflammation of the bladder), she knows the ins and outs of coping with chronic illness. In A Delicate Balance, she provides a compelling mix of useful information and real-life stories (including an appendix of resource numbers for various medical and self-help organizations) to help others find the will and the way to survive and thrive.
Wells characterizes the onset of a chronic illness as the beginning of a journey toward understanding, accepting, and healing, and she organizes her book to help lead the reader on that journey. The first few chapters deal with the psychological stages of illness and the perseverance that's often needed to get an accurate diagnosis and find a suitable health care partner. Middle chapters detail the search for treatment and the effects of chronic illness on personal relationships and the ability to work. The final chapter offers the optimistic view that chronic illness is a gift--albeit one that you don't want and can't give back, but that will ultimately teach you many important life lessons. Yes, chronic illness changes your life, she writes, but such change is not necessarily bad--and having a guide like this can help you through it. --Nancy Monson
Many people suffer from chronic illnesses such as chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia, and Crohn's disease, and though their suffering is great, it is often invisible to others. Wells, a journalist and health writer who suffers from fibromyalgia, Sjogren's syndrome, and interstitial cystitis, has written this book in the hope of helping herself and others attain a balance between completely giving in to disease and denying that they are ill. Though the writing style does not enliven the subject, Wells gives good advice on finding a doctor, accepting illness, working with a chronic disease, maintaining relationships, and searching for both conventional and alternative treatments. She also offers insight into chronic illness from both her point of view and that of a number of other chronically ill people she interviewed. The comments of her interviewees are the most compelling part of the book. Recommended for public libraries and patient education collections.?Stacey Hathaway, Fordham Health Sciences Lib., Wright State Univ., Dayton, OH
Copyright 1998 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
For anyone dealing with any kind of chronic illness, this book is a godsend. "Invisible chronic illness" is anything but invisible to those dealing with it (patient,... Read morePublished on April 28, 2013 by J. S. Miller
This is a keeper. The author spends time giving thoughtful advice on many subjects without talking down to you. Read morePublished on March 3, 2013 by Chelle