- News & Events
- Professional Development
|Book Review: Facing the Cognitive Challenges of Multiple Sclerosis|
Facing the Cognitive Challenges of Multiple Sclerosis
Jeffrey N. Gingold
Published: May 2006
Publisher: Demos Medical Publishing
Editorial Review by Dorothea Cassidy Pfohl, RN, MSCN:
Language laced with ironic humor and crisp images of a mental wheelchair express the devastation of what he terms smack-in-the-face cognitive symptoms.
The way from denial to treatment included neuropsychological testing and disease modifying therapies. He shares the adventure of accepting injectable therapy, and even embraced it by (owning the injection process).
His honesty and practical choices, like yoga over tai chi when memorizing movements became difficult, show his flexibility and determination to get on with life. The story is not always pleasant, but it is all too real.
While half of those with MS experience cognitive problems, in only 10 -15% is the dysfunction severe. Believing that having a tactical outline to live each day fully, and that MS deserves informed attention and action, he found many with similar burdens. His advocacy and altruistic service to the community assures that others will not find the limited resources he encountered in his search for care and caring. The story of peer support and chat rooms testify his conviction that sharing with others might be the best way to survive MS. Down to earth and determined, he advised celebrity David Landers to stay cooler by not wearing socks. Perspectives found at the end of chapters provide practical advice about choosing care, maximizing appointments, options for medications, disclosing at work, facing retirement and even avoiding confusion.
Not a clinical treatise, Gingold's memoir is at times a poetic testament to one man's courage and how he came to know what he was facing:
His grounded acceptance of cognitive challenges as part of living with MS and willingness to confront them in print for the world to see is informative, heartening and a very good read.
About the Reviewer: