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New Book Offers Practical Advice and Hope for Cancer Survivors

Article date: October 14, 2008

If you were recently diagnosed with cancer or are currently going through cancer treatment, you will find a lot of practical advice and encouragement in Julie K. Silver, MD's new book, What Helped Get Me Through: Cancer Survivors Share Wisdom and Hope, published by the American Cancer Society.

The book, which is based on first-hand accounts from cancer survivors and interviews with leading cancer experts, will help you cope with both day-to-day concerns (How should my diet change during treatment?) and complex emotional issues (How do I talk to my children about cancer?), and it does so in an easy-to-read, personal way.

Dr. Silver is an assistant professor at Harvard Medical School and the author of two other books, including After Cancer Treatment: Heal Faster, Better, Stronger and Super Healing. In 2006, she was awarded the American Cancer Society Lane Adams Quality of Life Award. This year marks her 5th year as a breast cancer survivor.

For this book, Silver surveyed nearly 300 cancer survivors from all walks of life: teachers, executives, stay-at-home moms, and several celebrities, including Lance Armstrong, Scott Hamilton, Sharon Osbourne, and Carly Simon. She asked them all sorts of questions about their cancer experience, like how friends made a difference, what they did to relieve stress, how they balanced work and family, how their bodies and intimacy were affected by cancer, and how cancer changed their lives.

The result is a book that's chockfull of candid personal stories about living with cancer and lists of real-world coping strategies.

Friends and family of cancer patients and survivors should get a lot out of this book, too. Some chapters in particular might be especially illuminating: "How My Family Helped," "What Would Have Helped but Was Too Hard to Ask," "How My Body and Intimacy Were Affected," and "How Cancer Changed My Life." It can sometimes be difficult to know how best to reach out to the person with cancer, and these candid chapters offer real insight into what the person with cancer may be thinking, feeling, and most in need of.

What Helped Get Me Through: Cancer Survivors Share Wisdom and Hope is now available through the American Cancer Society's bookstore. Two other books authored by Silver's children and written for children also are available in the bookstore: Our Mom Is Getting Better and Our Dad Is Getting Better.


Reviewed by: Members of the ACS Medical Content Staff

ACS News Center stories are provided as a source of cancer-related news and are not intended to be used as press releases.

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