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Against Medical Advice
By James Patterson and Hal Friedman
Read by Kevin T. Collins

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Against Medical Advice

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Against Medical Advice
One Family's Struggle with an Agonizing Medical Mystery
By James Patterson and Hal Friedman
Read by Kevin T. Collins
Hachette Audio, (2008)
An Unabridged Recording on 5 CDs
ISBN 10: 1-60024-365-7
ISBN 13: 978-1-60024-365-3
Genre: Biography, Health
Other editions: Large Print (Hardcover) | Standard Print (Hardcover)

Reviewed by Auggie Moore - November 3, 2008

What would you do if you discover that something was wrong with your child, something terribly wrong, yet doctors seem unable to help. If you are like the Friedman's and most parents - you simply do whatever it takes to get your child the help that he or she needs. For Cory Friedman, life began to become unbearable when he was nearly five. He started to shake uncontrollably and he started to develop annoying tics and began to lose the ability to control his own speech. As events would unfold, Cory was diagnosed with Tourette's Syndrome and OCD (Obsessive Compulsive Disorder). His doctor's tried to treat his illness with a variety of medications, but nothing seemed to work. In fact, Cory seemed to be getting worse.

At odds with the medical establishment and uncomfortable with the level of support that Cory was receiving from his school and social contacts, Cory's parents set out to discover what Cory needed to be happy and productive. They decided that they were no longer going to sit passively by while doctors used their son as a guinea pig or while his peers ridiculed him and he fell further and further behind in his studies.

What followed was a remarkable journey in which Cory and his parents, aided by a handful of courageous teachers and medical personnel, did the impossible - they helped Cory to lead as normal of a life as possible and to come to terms with whom he is and what his role in life is. This true-life, decades long journey is documented in Against Medical Advice: One Family's Struggle with an Agonizing Medical Mystery, which was written by Cory's father, Hal Friedman, and James Patterson.

The combination of Friedman and Patterson's writing skills give this book the feel and pace of a novel - Friedman is himself the author of five novels, while this is Patterson's first run at writing a work of nonfiction. Within this compelling story, we witness not only Cory's daily struggles, but also the struggles of his entire family as they learn to deal with Cory's illness. This book will give you a unique insight into the difficulties that parents face when trying to get care for their child when no cure really exists for their illness and the difficult decision that it can be to go against medical advice. It is also a book that will give you an unprecedented glimpse in the daily struggle that someone with Tourette's Syndrome goes through.

While often sad, this is an important book. It is a book that will provide inspiration and hope to parents of children with Tourette's Syndrome. It is also a story that should be read or listened to by medical, educational, social services, and other professionals who work with or who may come into contact with someone with Tourette's. This book will help enable them to empathize with their client's plight, and will help them to understand the help that they really need.

This audio edition of Against Medical Advice is read by Kevin T. Collins and it includes a prologue and epilogue read by Hal Friedman.


For information on Tourette Syndrome, visit: MedLine Plus' Tourette Syndrome infomation website

and, for information on OCD, visit: MedLine Plus' OCD infomation website.
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