About the Book
This amazing collection of true stories reveals the drama that unfolds when lives are disrupted by a deadly disease. Drawn from all over the U.S., Canada, England and Australia, they provide a unique window into the doctor/patient relationship, which, at its best, is a paragon of empathetic communication. At its worst, it can lead to delays in diagnosis that adversely affect survival rates. The majority of ovarian and related cancers are not diagnosed until they have reached an advanced stage. Women may suffer symptoms for months, even years, before the true cause is recognized. They may be plied with prescriptions for anti-depressants, hormones, and fad diets, when they complain of physical pain. Often, they are told that they have an "irritable bowel" - a term with vague connotations of some kind of character defect. Wisely, the author allows each individual to speak in his or her own voice, thus humanizing the dry statistics and underlining the core of courage, indeed, the sheer heroism, that is required of ordinary people when serious illness strikes. Husbands, sons, and daughters have contributed especially poignant accounts. Asked to relive the most harrowing time of their lives, they wrote through tears. Some stories are tragic. Some will make you angry. But there are triumphs too, touches of humor, and much joy.