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.