Magazine article Feminist Collections: A Quarterly of Women's Studies Resources

CANCER SOURCEBOOK FOR WOMEN, 4th Edition

Magazine article Feminist Collections: A Quarterly of Women's Studies Resources

CANCER SOURCEBOOK FOR WOMEN, 4th Edition

Article excerpt

Karen Bellenir, ed., CANCER SOURCEBOOK FOR WOMEN, 4th edition. Detroit, MI: Omnigraphics Press, 2010. (Health reference series.) 698p. glossary, index. $95.00, ISBN 978-0780811393.

Historically, women have been underrepresented in medical research and clinical trials. The study of disease and the development of therapeutic treatments have focused predominantly on white male subjects, forcing women to adhere to medical protocols that fail to consider their unique needs. Similarly, many health handbooks, in an effort to be all-inclusive, offer only brief chapters addressing women's concerns. The Cancer Sourcebook for Women breaks this tradition by focusing on "gynecological cancers and other cancers of special concern to women" (p. xiii).

This easy-to-read handbook from the Omnigraphics Health Reference series offers basic information on breast, cervical, endometrial, ovarian, uterine, vaginal, and vulvar cancers and gestational tumors, in a condensed format. The book begins with a review of cancer and cancer risk factors, but quickly focuses its attention on gender-specific cancer risks, such as human papillomavirus (HPV) and hormonal medications. Gynecological conditions that are not associated with cancer are also briefly discussed, in an effort to dispel any misconceptions that these conditions are indicative of cancer. Throughout the book, a question-and-answer format successfully anticipates readers' concerns. Part IV includes a review of cancers responsible for the highest number of deaths among females; the information in this section is much briefer and more general than that in the others.

The Cancer Sourcebook for Women presents useful information on diagnosis and treatment. Readers will find helpful suggestions for being proactive and working with their health care providers during treatment. The book is written with the assumption that the audience has no prior knowledge of the subject matter; medical terms and tests are clearly explained, and concise descriptions are provided for surgical procedures commonly used to treat gynecological cancers. …

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