Friday, July 5, 2013

Chief Complaint Brain Tumor :: Book Tour :: Review

Chief Complaint Brain Tumor
By:: John Kerastas

Publisher:: Sunstone Press
Pages:: 136
Price:: $16.95
ISBN:: 978-0865349087
Type:: Non- Fiction

About the Book::

At 57 years old, I thought I was the poster child for fifty-year old healthiness: I competed in triathlons, rode in 100 mile biking events and ate a healthy diet chock full of organic vegetables. Then I discovered that I had a brain tumor the size of my wife’s fist.
My memoir chronicles the first year I spent addressing tumor-related health issues: preparing for my first operation, discovering a dangerous skull infection, having the infected portion of my skull surgically removed, learning about my substantial vision and cognitive losses, undergoing rehab and radiation treatments, and learning to live with my “new normal.” And, as best I can tell, the phrase “new normal” is the medical community’s code words for “You’re alive, so quit bitchin’.”
As my health changed, so did my sense of humor. My humor started out superficially light-hearted prior to the first operation; transmogrified into gallows humor after several subsequent operations; and leveled out as somewhat wry-ish after radiation and rehab.
Topics I write about in the book include:
How not to tell everybody you have a brain tumor
Why it’s a lot of work to die in this country
Why I had difficulties in naming my tumor
How I negotiated bathroom visits with “Nurse Don’t-Bother-Me”
Why I could prove that I was the “dumbest guy in the room”
Why someone compared the back of my head to a diseased goat
How I flunked a job interview with myself
This is a book for anybody interested in memoirs about people dealing with personal crises, for patients trudging through rehab, for caretakers helping victims of serious illnesses, or for anybody looking for an unexpected chuckle from an unlikely subject.

jpgAuthor Bio:
I’ve worked at a global advertising agency, at several technology start-up companies and as a free-lance writer. Currently I spend most of my time blogging, speaking and writing about brain health, brain tumors and rehab. I speak to hospital rehab groups, stroke and aphasia groups, and last summer spoke at the American Brain Tumor Association’s annual “Patient and Caregiver” conference.
My charity and non-profit efforts includes work through the Taproot Foundation on behalf of Apna Ghar (a Chicago-based non-profit providing domestic violence services to immigrant communities). I also go on Appalachia Service project trips through my church, participate in Early Response Teams that follow first responders into disaster areas, and teach and certify Early Response Teams through the United Methodist Committee on Relief (e.g.UMCOR).
Authors Links:

Review Thoughts::

How would it be if you found out that you had a Brain Tumor? I am sure for most that this would be  terrifying time in a persons life to find this out. This is a heart felt book and true account of a mans diagnosis, surgery and recovery from benign brain tumor that left him partially blind. 
Kerastas talks about the symptoms he had that led him to seek out a doctor for his care. As he is a talking to the doctors he still has his fun sassiness even as he describes his reaction to hearing about the fist-size brain tumor. To create a lighter side he names is tumor The Blob. Kerastas also talks about the hospital staff that he encounters.

With Kerastas dealing with his health issues he is also having to deal with his long time friend and dog is also affected with his own health issues. He is able to intertwin his story as well as the story of his dog to make you feel the struggle that his is dealing with all at once.

While the book ends Kerastas struggles will not be with the effects of the tumor. I leaves you with a sense of hope that we have of getting better and not be sick. Not everyone ones journey is the same if you have a tumor and this is just one mans account of what is happening to him.

FTC:: This post was written for CMBooks, who provided the complimentary product in exchange for my honest review.

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