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ss triple helix - Easter 2009,  Care of the cancer patient

Care of the cancer patient

<p><strong>Care of the cancer patient</strong><br />
<strong><em>A quick reference guide</em></strong><br />
<<em>Wesley Finegan and Angela McGurk</em><br />
Radcliffe Publishing 2007 <br />
£19.95 ; Pb; 328pp<br />
ISBN 1 84619 128 9</p>

This book is a palliative care textbook by Finegan, a recently deceased CMF member and palliative care physician, and McGurk, a nurse. It covers a wide range of issues pertinent to those looking after patients with cancer. There is a large section on communication skills, an A-Z overview of how to manage common symptoms, and a section on ethical and spiritual issues. It concludes with a series of quick practical guides on subjects as diverse as dictating letters, appraising a research paper, and how to relax!

Written with warmth and humanity, this is a helpful book. It is laid out clearly with a consistent structure that will help systematic assessment and management. The advice given is simple and straightforward, although perhaps a little brief at times. Clear examples and a personal touch come from the extensive use of anecdotes in certain sections. These are very helpful but make the text cumbersome at times, hindering quick reference.

This is a good generalist cancer palliative care text. However, it is not a specialist palliative care text, so readers who desire greater detail may decide to read it in conjunction with one of the resource texts listed at the beginning of the book.

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