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The Anatomy of Hope: How People Find Strength in the Face of Illness [Paperback]

Jerome E. Groopman
4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
Price: 6.99 & FREE Delivery in the UK on orders over 10. Details
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Book Description

3 Jan 2006
'We are just beginning to appreciate hope's reach and have not defined its limits. I see hope as the very heart of healing.' So writes Jerome Groopman, who has been a doctor for almost thirty years. In this unique book he describes the astonishing effects that hope, or the lack of it, can have on an illness. As a patient, he has also learned to overcome cynicism and defeatism and embrace hope. Here, with great wisdom and compassion, he reveals what he has learned about hope and its ability to triumph over disease, both emotionally and physically. The search for hope is most urgent at a patient's bedside. "The Anatomy of Hope" takes us there, bringing us into the lives of people at pivotal moments when they reach for and find hope - or when it eludes their grasp. Through these intimate portraits, we learn how to distinguish true hope from false, why everyone deserves to have hope, and whether we should ever give up. Fascinating, wise and inspiring, this is an essential book for anyone facing serious illness or who is dealing with a loved one in extremis.

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Product details

  • Paperback: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Pocket Books; New edition edition (3 Jan 2006)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1416502017
  • ISBN-13: 978-1416502012
  • Product Dimensions: 19 x 13 x 2.4 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (3 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 411,852 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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'This book will fascinate those who are well and provide invaluable information for those who are confronting cancer as a patient, or as a relative. It has been excellently written and has special appeal to me both as a patient and as a doctor, as the author shares many of my opinons (or prejudices?).' Dr Thomas Stuttaford, THE TIMES 'So are the purveyors of conventional medicine missing a trick? Dr Jerome Groopman, a US haematologist specialising in cancer, certatinly thinks so. In his thought-provoking new book, THE ANATOMY OF HOPE, he distinguishes the hope that heals (and he is convinced it does) from the trap of wishful thinking' Deborah Hutton, TIMES

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Front Cover | Copyright | Table of Contents | Excerpt | Index | Back Cover
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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews
19 of 19 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars Hope ? 17 Feb 2005
Dr Groopman clearly has great experience, as a doctor. I too have a lot of experience, as a cancer patient. Much of his book had me cheering: I too have been lied to by doctors wanting to protect me from the horrific reality of a terminal illness; I too have several years of the debilitating effects of chemo therapy. He is bang on when he talks about the importance of maintaining hope to endure the treatment. I have had doctors who have blithely assured me I'd be OK in a few days, when the truth is that almost everyone on my regime is very sick for several weeks. Ultimately my own hope comes from knowing that when and if it all gets too much I have the means (lethal drugs)to end my life peacefully and painlessly. No doubt this would greatly shock the good Dr Groopman who is clearly a Christian.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
The Anatomy of Hope is a well written and immensely thought provoking book. The theme of the book is the use of hope in medical treatment, how it can be used to improve patient outcomes and the ethical dilemmas of how much to say and how much to leave out.

An oncologist who started work in the 1980's, at time when cancer was much less treatable than it is now, Coopman recounts his introduction to the world of hope in a series of vignettes. It's a tale of trial and error, blending an examination of hope with a collection of stories that make the point.

I found this approach fascinating and informative, I felt I had a far better understanding of the issues not only in an abstract way but in how they affected the people involved. As a non-medic I don't have to diagnose, treat, or give people very difficult news, and for this I am deeply grateful.

After describing his attempts at inspiring hope in his patients, he tells of his own experience on the other side of the story after ill-judged spinal surgery left him bed ridden for months, debilitated and in pain for years afterwards. His own experience overcoming this and receiving realistic hope gives him a broad perspective in his approach to hope in medical care.

In the last part of the book, Coopman investigates the psychological and neurological basis for hope visiting a variety of researchers. In this section he draws the distinction between true hope: a realistic appraisal of the current situation whilst projecting your mind into a positive future which lifts your spirits, and false hope which looks to a happier future but will not face current realities. If you're going to be hopeful, prepare to be courageous.

All in all the book is an engaging blend of autobiography and investigation. The back cover blurb has one reviewer commenting "A copy should be airlifted to every NHS oncologist immediately'. I couldn't agree more.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Inspirational 15 April 2007
By Fiona
(...) Through Groopman's accounts, this book is quietly inspiring and I am passing it on to 3 people affected by cancer. Not only was it useful to me on a personal level but as a student physiotherapist I also found it useful on a professional level too.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta)
Amazon.com: 5.0 out of 5 stars  2 reviews
13 of 13 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars The Role Hope Plays in Sustaining Quality of Life 12 Mar 2004
By Paula D. Matuskey - Published on Amazon.com
I have read this author's books before, and I genuinely like his descriptions about the medical profession. This book particularly explains the tensions that physicians face in the conflict between being frank with patients and yet not taking hope away from them, even in serious circumstances. I believe it's easy for people, when they are well, to say that they would fight an illness with no holds barred, but when reality strikes, that dedication may falter or fail. This book does not gloss over the trials of cancer and other debilitating illnesses, but helped me understand in many ways why different patients react in radically differing ways when facing a crisis of their health. As so many baby boomers are aging themselves or facing the crises of aging parents, this book can be a godsend. But it's not just for those of us who are older. It's a wonderful read by a very interesting, compelling writer.
0 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Perfect! 15 Feb 2010
By Jen - Published on Amazon.com
Format:Hardcover|Verified Purchase
Item was shipped on time and in good condition--all for a great price! Thank you!
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