When Blood Breaks Down: Lessons from Leukemia

MIT. Apr. 2020. 328p. ISBN 9780262043724. $26.95. MED
Drawing on extensive clinical experience working with people diagnosed with leukemia, Sekeres (director, Leukemia program, Cleveland Clinic) writes an accessible book exploring both the scientific knowledge of and patient experiences with leukemia, or cancer of the body’s blood-forming tissues. With grace and fluency, Sekeres offers more than a scientific portrait of leukemia; he also includes personal stories about the origins of the disease; the complexities of the doctor-patient relationship; and how leukemia treatment, such as chemotherapy, can impact patients along with their families. Sekeres combines literary substance with significant medical information and data. He also details leukemia treatment past and present, offering a historical analysis of how the condition has been managed over time. Lastly, he introduces doctors and nurses, mostly based in the United States and Europe, who specialize in the condition.
VERDICT The engaging stories in this book, both personal and scientific, make it a good choice for readers interested in solid literature on medicine, especially cancer research.
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