Read Patient: The True Story of a Rare Illness by Ben Watt Free Online
Book Title: Patient: The True Story of a Rare Illness|
The author of the book: Ben Watt
Edition: Bloomsbury Paperbacks
Date of issue: February 13th 2014
ISBN: No data
ISBN 13: No data
Format files: PDF
The size of the: 23.17 MB
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Reader ratings: 5.5
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This is one of those books I've wanted to read for a long time. Even if you're not interested in his/their music, this is still quite interesting a book about a rare illness, and a view into a mind of one who had it. And one understands better how the author was so skinny around the time EBTG had their hit, "Missing".
The illness in question turns out to be: (view spoiler)[Churg-Strauss Syndrome (rare autoimmune disease that pre-late 1970s lead to death) (hide spoiler)].
Sometime around early January of 1992, the author, a member of the band Everything But The Girl, started to feel terrible. His mild asthma started to grow worse and worse, and even the strongest asthma medicines seemed eventually not to work. Then came the chest pains that took him to the start of the hospital stay, in June. But this was just the beginning of the series of symptoms that followed - and the hunt for right diagnosis started.
We get a view of his state of mind, how it changes (certain detachment grows, which makes return to the world a bit of a shock; also, many moments of what he thought of certain situations in italics). We get a view of all the pain, the fever, the vomiting, the discomforts of various kind. There are some disturbing details which might mean that some readers might want to avoid eating while reading.
But we also get the humor, like needing someone to move his head a little to hear better through his left ear. And reading about the doctors, nurses, patients, and visitors is interesting: the nice, the annoying, the sad. And enjoyment: aromatherapy foot message, a welcome ice cube after a long period of no fluid through mouth, a good shower, being able to sleep on your side again, finally...
It's nice to read how supportive his girlfriend, later wife, Tracey, was (I have no doubt that this ordeal influenced the lyrics for future songs). The picture of what the home was like to her while he was in the hospital was moving (take away lists, meals for one, dirty dishes for one in the kitchen...).
His mother is also supportive, though she doesn't quite understand the details of the illness. His father is sometimes infuriatingly afraid of visiting, but that's just his character (and he gets better at visiting, eventually).
We get to visit the author's past: family Christmases, his dates and travels with Tracey, how he spent time with his dad, his dad's band-past. We also get a view of author's imaginary worlds and memories.
And finally, we get to see what it's like to be back home, what uncertainties remain, what restrictions to the diet will stay (it's a (view spoiler)[small-bowel diet, low-fat, low-fibre - but there's still surprisingly lot to eat, and alcohol is permitted (hide spoiler)]).
It's a picture of a treatment of a rare illness, of what a patient would think through the experience - before, during, after - and of course, this is a picture of the author, who I grew to like through this :) I'm glad I finally got around to reading this.
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