cover image Misdiagnosed: One Woman's Tour of%E2%80%94and Escape from%E2%80%94Healthcareland

Misdiagnosed: One Woman's Tour of%E2%80%94and Escape from%E2%80%94Healthcareland

Jody Berger. Sourcebooks, $14.99 trade paper (288p) ISBN 978-1-4022-9388-7

After intermittent tingling in her hands and feet, Berger, a 43-year-old sports journalist, sees a neurologist who orders an MRI; from the lesions detected on her spine he swiftly diagnoses multiple sclerosis. Terrified by the ambiguity of the disease and unwilling to follow a prescription for steroids, Berger begins an odyssey through the health care system, visiting health professionals from various medical persuasions who diagnose according to their specialty, from heavy metal toxicity to depression. As she travels from doctor to doctor (occasionally paying out-of-pocket for tests that aren't covered by insurance), Berger also delves into her personal life: her uneasy relationship with her mother, a childhood in which she felt disrespected, a divorce, and a shaky romance with a man she met three weeks after her marriage ended. As a journalist, Berger creates her own "assignment," relentlessly "touring the American medical landscape" in a yearlong struggle to arrive at an accurate diagnosis. The author's experience reveals that it pays to be armed with knowledge, fortitude, and%E2%80%94perhaps most importantly%E2%80%94tenacity, when entering the health care system. Readers will breathe a sigh of relief when Berger finds a team (an osteopath and Ayurvedic physician) that unravels the mystery. Her story is told with just the right portions of introspection and useful information. (Sept.)