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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
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From Publishers Weekly
Imagine the sensation of a fishhook lodged behind your left eye and tugging backwards. Now imagine that you live with that pain 24 hours a day for 15 years. That is Kamen's headache, one that she attempted at first to cure but finally learned to accept. Kamen (Her Way: Young Women Remake the Sexual Revolution) first tried all sorts of drugs—some were addicting, others made her gain 70 pounds in six months; none had any effect on the pain. She turns to alternative medicine: cranial-sacral adjustments, acupuncture, gluten-free diets, magnets, yoga. Kamen intersperses her account of these increasingly bizarre treatments with a look at how Western medicine, and even feminism, abandons patients with chronic pain and other invisible ailments: since her pain has no discernible physical cause, she has been told it's "all in her head." This book may not be uplifting, but it is undeniably funny. Kamen's irreverent sense of humor about her pain and herself makes the book a delight to read as she unabashedly pokes fun at the corporate pharmaceutical industry (even while she hopes for a test-tube cure), doctors and other caregivers. Kamen makes the reader understand what it is like to be happy even while one is in pain. (Mar.)
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.
"A 'must read' for nurses and anyone else who suffers from an invisible disability...Razor-sharp reporting." -- Nurseweek, 6/5/06
"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
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Thanks to this book, I feel much more able to articulate exactly what is wrong with me and what I want to try next. I'm looking forward to my next headache clinic visit. I'm armed with a list of questions and suggestions that will prepare me to be a more equal partner with the medical team.
And what a comfort to know there are other Tired Girls out there. Almost a secret sorority. I've ordered two extra copies, one for my psychologist and one for the headache clinic. And I'm making my husband read it, too.
Anybody suffering from chronic pain, not just headache, can get something out of this book. Bravo!
She details the history of medicine as it relates to such illnesses and pain (especially women), but also allows the reader to feel he/she is a part of a greater world that includes so many who are suffering. She intersperses her own story with intricately researched segments on the history of chronic daily headache/migraine, and medicine as a whole as it relates to this condition and other similar ones of pain and illness.
What I liked so much about her book were the similarities to my own story. Literally, the timeline is almost identical. I tried everything she tried. I felt every emotion she felt. I reached every conclusion she did, and felt every ounce of despair and hope she felt. The reason this is so significant for me, is that it truly shows me that there are thousands or millions of people out there with a similar daily experience. I go through my life feeling like it's just me. I don't really know others with this disability, so I am singled out as the one 'headache girl' in my circle of friends. That leads to an incredible feeling of loneliness, and a pervading feeling that I am so unlucky and drew a really bad card in life.
Having the knowledge that at least one other person has an almost identical story, makes me feel connected to others in a very profound way.
Other readers may have differences with regards to their own journey, but I invite them to focus on the fact that we are all in this, together. That is what is important about this story and this book. We are NOT ALONE!
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