With increasing frequency, psychotherapy practitioners are encountering patients who struggle with enduring physical illnesses, such as cancer, cardiovascular disease, AIDS, diabetes, and kidney disease. Chronic physical illnesses have a common psychological thread: The individual's experience of life will never again return to the pre-illness sense of self, of options, of invulnerability, of obliviousness to the body's functioning. The individual's strongest wish is to return to "normal." The psychotherapist's strongest wish is to heal. The uncertainty, progression, and unpredictability of illness create anxiety in the therapist as well as in the patient.
Treating People With Chronic Disease: A Psychological Guide is an accessible volume that offers practitioners straightforward guidelines for overcoming these anxieties and helping people adjust to lives drastically changed by chronic illness. Each chapter presents a different view of illness from a different vantage point, reinforcing the author's holographic model of treatment. Detailed case examples in support of the text are offered throughout.
In addition to treatment strategies, the authors address environment, countertransference issues, and the special needs of children and families struck by chronic physical disease. An invaluable, comprehensive guide to related sources, useful for the chronically ill as well as for practitioners, is also included. Written by Carol D. Goodheart, a psychologist, and Martha H. Lansing, a physician, this volume builds a bridge connecting psychology and medicine, mind and body, in innovative, practical ways.