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Books Written by our Faculty Members


Michael J. Green M.D. and Kimberly R. Myers, PhD along with MK Czerwiec, Ian Williams, Susan Merrill Squier, and Scott T. Smith

Graphic Medicine is an exciting new book series from Penn State Press. Curated by an editorial collective with scholarly, creative, and clinical expertise, the series is inspired by a growing awareness of the value of comics as an important resource for communicating about a range of issues broadly termed “medical.” For medical practitioners, patients, and families and caregivers dealing with illness and disability, graphic narrative enlightens complicated or difficult experiences. For scholars in literary, cultural, and comics studies, the genre articulates a complex and powerful analysis of illness, medicine, and disability and a rethinking of the boundaries of “health.” The series will be diverse in its approach. It will include monographic studies and edited collections from scholars, practitioners, and medical educators, as well as original comics from artists and non-artists alike, such as self-reflective “graphic pathographies” or comics used in medical training and education, providing a creative way to learn and teach.




toxic_book_cover-192x300Toxic Nursing
Cheryl Dellasega, Ph.D. and Rebecca Volpe, Ph.D.

Nurse Managers and nurse administrators at all levels are frequently confronted by the need to manage employee issues arising from interpersonal relationships. These include: conflict (relational Aggression or covert bullying), cynicism (negative work attitudes), and calamity (drama and overt antagonism). As a much needed follow up to When Nurses Hurt Nurses (STTI, 2011), this book offers numerous concrete strategies for common employee challenges that nurse supervisors face.







Time To Go
James O. Ballard, M.D. and Anne Hunsaker Hawkins, Ph.D.
This unusual book presents three prize-winning one-act plays on the hard choices that patients, their families, and their physicians often face at the end of life. The purpose of the volume is to increase awareness and knowledge about advance directives and, beyond that, to facilitate discussion about the many complicated issues surrounding death and dying today.

Each play is followed by critical commentary. The introduction provides lucid and succinct explanation of the human, ethical, and legal contexts for the rights of patients in the United States. The volume includes appendices providing values history and living will declarations, durable power of attorney statements, and resource information.




Breaking the Cycle: How to Turn Conflict into Collaboration When You and Your Patients Disagree
George F. Blackall, Psy.D., Steven Simms, and Michael J. Green, M.D., M.S.
Doctors want to help their patients. Patients want their doctors to help. But when conflicts arise and lead to an impasse-over issues as simple as prescribing antibiotics for a cold or as complicated as end-of-life care-physicians can be left feeling frustrated and helpless. As their relationship deteriorates, both doctor and patient feel misunderstood and cut-off. Inspired by the authors’ experience with a twelve-year-old girl who struggled to take life-saving medication and based on principals and proven techniques from the field of family therapy, the authors present a unique approach to the problem of doctor-patient conflict.

This practical guide focuses on how changes in a physician’s thinking can improve challenging interactions. Breaking the Cycle features:
• A wealth of real-life experiences and case studies that show how impasses arise and how best to respond.
• A systematic approach that helps readers overcome impasses by building relationships with their patients, not withdrawing from them.
• The knowledge, insights, and experience of an internist, health psychologist, and family therapist.
Breaking the Cycle explains how physicians can understand, approach, and resolve doctor-patient conflict in a way that breaks down barriers and builds stronger, more gratifying relationships.


Mean Girls Grown Up
Cheryl Dellasega, Ph.D.

Whenever I spoke about the phenomenon of relational aggression, it seemed one person in the audience would ask: What happens to these girls when they grow up? It made me curious, too, but when I looked for any books or studies on the topic, there weren’t any. Once more, the words of real women who have lived through RA are at the core of this book, along with helpful steps to take if you are an adult target, aggressor, or in-betweener.





The Starving Family
Cheryl Dellasega, Ph.D. 

What started as a simple project at work became a book when I realized that parents had so much to say and share about the impact of eating disorders on the entire family system. Both mothers and fathers talked to me at length about what it is like to caregive for a son or daughter with anorexia, bulimia, or EDNOS. A companion workbook provides many tools that can help parents assess, monitor, and support their ill child. All my proceeds from this book benefit the Penn State Eating Disorder Unit





Girl Wars 
Cheryl Dellasega, Ph.D.

Halfway through the writing of my first book, I realized relationships were one of the key issues girls struggled with during adolescence. At the same time, my work with young women had opened my eyes to the concept of relational aggression (RA) which is sometimes called female bullying. To examine how RA impacts on the lives of tweens and teens, I obtained stories from across the country, and then, with my coauthor Charisse Nixon, wrote a guide that provides concrete strategies for helping girls cope.






Surviving Ophelia
Cheryl Dellasega, Ph.D.

If you’re the mom of a teen girl in turmoil you’ll understand why I wrote this book. In it, I share both my story and those of many other women who labored to keep their daughters healthy and sane. If you’re someone who cares about the mom of a teen girl in turmoil, this book will help you support and appreciate your wife, friend, sister, or other. And if you’re one of those feisty teen girls who battled her way through a turbulent adolescence and survived, buy a copy of this for yourself, and then pass it on to your mother.






Forced to be Family
Cheryl Dellasega, Ph.D.

Taking my work on understanding and dealing with relational aggression among female family members (Mean Girls Grow Up, below) one step further, my new book examines the even harsher reality of female family feuds—sisters who sabotage, ex-wives who wage subtle warfare, and other family situations where women emotionally wound each other. This book uses clinical insights and real-life stories to explain why these female family antagonisms have a special power to hurt and offers practical strategies to help restore relationships and reclaim lives.






Girl Grudges 
Cheryl Dellasega, Ph.D.
Some girls may find it extremely difficult to forgive and forget when relationship hurts are deep and friendships fractured. Our country has witnessed too many extreme examples of inner conflicts that begin in childhood and explode into violence years later. Girl Grudges: Learning How to Forgive and Live, is written by two experts with many years of experience helping address deep-seated conflicts that cause ongoing pain for all involved.

This book offers a variety of experiential and educational activities to help girls in middle and high school either one-on-one or in groups. It is based on the ERA model (Educate, Relate, and Integrate) that first exposes girls to new information, then helps them apply this to their own situations, and finally, encourages internalization of healthier relationship alternatives.



A Small Good Thing: Stories of Children with HIV and Those Who Care for Them
Anne Hunsaker Hawkins, Ph.D.

Deeply moving and inspiring stories of children living with HIV and the truly remarkable people who care for them.
It was only when Dolores was on her deathbed that she told her husband, Cesar, that she had AIDS, as did their two small children and Cesar. Despite overwhelming obstacles, Cesar is fiercely devoted to caring for his children, one of whom is blind from the disease. Loretta and Mike Riley are on welfare with physical ailments of their own (diabetes, cancer, heart disease); nonetheless their love for a boy severely disabled from AIDS has brought about an astonishing transformation in him. Angelina, because of emotional problems in addition to HIV complications, has been in six different foster homes in two years, but is now in a home where she is thriving. Far from despairing, A Small, Good Thing presents intimate and life-affirming portraits of children born with HIV and the medical personnel, biological families, and foster families who care for them. Through these stories we see the effects of the disease on children and the efficacy of current treatments as well as the ins and outs of the medical systems and social agencies meant to help these children. Children with HIV are an often overlooked group. This immensely powerful and important book provides much needed attention and hope.



Respecting Patient Autonomy
Benjamin H. Levi, M.D., Ph.D.

Against a backdrop of real clinical situations, Benjamin H. Levi examines the dynamics that shape relations between patient and health care provider, addressing fundamental questions about how medical decisions should be reached and compelling the reader to think about health care issues and decisions in terms of the values and goals they promote. Presenting bioethics as a practical, educational activity rather than an abstract intellectual exercise, this important volume shows how dialogue between patients and health care providers can clarify both medical and ethical issues, promoting patient autonomy and advancing health care.





Illness in the Academy
Kimberly R. Myers, M.A., Ph.D
Illness in the Academy investigates the deep-seated, widespread belief among academics and medical professionals that lived experiences outside the workplace should not be sacrificed to the ideal of objectivity those academic and medical professions so highly value. The 47 selections in this collection illuminate how academics bring their intellectual and creative tools, skills, and perspectives to bear on experiences of illness. The selections cross genres as well as bridge disciplines and cultures.






The Patient (Aperçus: Histories Texts Cultures)
edited by: Kimberly Myers and Harold Schweizer

This collection of ten essays addresses the suffering of patients and how individuals as well as the larger society understand that suffering and try to ameliorate it. Four essays are personal reflections on illness, often interspersed with analyses of literary texts and including original poetry and creative prose. These pieces reveal how suffering is intensely private, how it happens interstitially, between medical appointments, procedures, and treatments. The essays reveal how, for many people, the psychological fragmentation that typically accompanies serious disease is ultimately more threatening to one’s overall well-being than the disease itself. The other six essays take a wider view of patienthood, examining it through the lens of history, politics, or culture. As a whole, this thoughtful volume attests to the rich intellectual and personal gains that result from an exploration of the condition of patienthood and what it means to become ‘patient’.




The Patient: Global Interdisciplinary Perspectives
Kimberly Myers, M.A., Ph.D.

While pain and suffering are universal, the experience,understanding, and expression of them are not. What it means to be a patient is unique to each individual: for example, what one person experiences as bothersome back pain, another might experience as debilitating. But patienthood also depends on one’s culture, both broadly and more narrowly defined (e.g., one’s ethnicity on the one hand and one’s immediate social circle on the other). Illness is a phenomenon constructed – sometimes passively, sometimes actively – according to the core values of the culture(s) of which the patient is a part. The Patient: Global Interdisciplinary Perspectives seeks to raise critical consciousness of issues confronting patients and contribute to a richer understanding of how one’s culture impacts the lived experience of disease. The chapters in this collection provide a snapshot of situations as they exist in a particular cultural and historical moment. Their long-term value lies in providing important historical documentation of where we are as an international community in the first decade of the 21st century. Hopefully, we can use such historical reminders as yardsticks to measure our progress in healthcare accessibility and funding as we reflect on the similarities and differences that exist between people across the globe, and among the particular communities in which they live.



Delivering Doctor Amelia: The Story of a Gifted Young Obstetrician’s Error and the Psychologist Who Helped Her
Daniel E. Shapiro, Ph.D.

“Voices are a soul’s signature,” says psychologist Dan Shapiro, who in his daily practice hears plenty of them. For all his expertise, he admits he’s still terrified that “someone will keep something from me, and when they tell me the truth, I’ll be useless.”

Treating other physicians has become one of Shapiro’s specialties. When the obstetrician Amelia Sorvino seeks his help—distraught that her own medical error could have injured a patient’s baby— Shapiro finds his talents as counselor and healer pushed to their limits. Session by session, he works to discover the sources of Amelia’s anguish–for his own sake as much as hers: he’s familiar with the burden of a doctor’s guilt, and he has seen how loss and trauma, if unchecked, can echo from generation to generation in a family. In this probing, intensely personal memoir, the words “Physician, heal thyself” assume a fresh and moving urgency.



Mom’s Marijuana: Life, Love, and Beating the Odds
Daniel Shapiro, Ph.D. 

A young man battles Hodgkin’s disease and survives–with more than a little help from his Mom–in this wry and uplifting memoir about life, love, and beating the odds.

When Dan Shapiro’s decidedly anti-drug mom put aside her convictions and grew marijuana in her backyard garden (behind a discrete screen of sunflowers), he learned that in the face of a crisis we all have the opportunity to decide what is most important to us. In this hilarious, high-spirited, sometimes harrowing memoir, Shapiro invites us into his battle with cancer, his romance with an oncology nurse, his journey through graduate school, and his most important life lessons. He tells his story with wit and grace and indomitable spirit, showing us that only when the rhythm of life is stirred violently are able to discover its full beauty.



Advice to a young physician and other essays by Sir John Floyer
Philip K. Wilson, Ph.D.
(Introduced and co-edited with Denis Gibbs)
‘Advice to a Young Physician offers a fascinating glimpse into the world of post Restoration and early eighteenth-century medicine. For the first time, a document prepared by the Lichfield physician, Sir John Floyer for his grandson has been retrieved from the Library of The Queen’s College Oxford. Transcribed, and edited, it is now published in this attractive and accessible form. The document itself is prefaced by a very informative introduction and illustrated by a great range of well-chosen and reproduced images.

Floyer was in residence at Oxford during the great burst of scientific activity that followed the Restoration, and had links with Boyle and Robert Hooke, among other pioneers of modern science. In Floyer’s thinking, as demonstrated in this book, we see a contest or mingling between archaic ideas (such as the more or less medieval notion that appropriate medicines reveal themselves by their tastes) and pioneering and modern conceptions. Floyer remarks, for instance, that England lacks hospital training for doctors and recommends that his grandson go abroad to gain first-hand clinical experience. He was one of the first to tabulate medical results and – most famously – to pioneer the taking of the pulse. The book contains three central chapters in which Floyer offers remarks on what we would now call the ethics of medical practice. These are illuminating and would still, in many instances hold good today. John A. Wiltshire


Anna Seward’s Life of Erasmus Darwin
Philip K. Wilson, Ph.D.
(co-edited with Elizabeth A. Dolan and Malcolm Dick)
In 1804, at a time of industrial, political and intellectual ferment, Anna Seward (1742-1809) published the first biography of “Erasmus Darwin” (1731-1802). Darwin, Charles Darwin’s grandfather, was one of Britain’s foremost physicians, scientists, poets and observers of nature. Anna Seward was a leading poet, critic and commentator. Both flourished in the effervescent cultural landscape of the late-eighteenth century and made Lichfield a provincial centre for intellectual activity. Throughout her biography, Seward describes encounters with influential figures, including members of the Lunar Society, and explores Darwin’s scientific and literary creativity. But her biography is more than a commentary on others: it reveals her complex relationship with Darwin, her love of poetry and the natural landscape, and the personality, challenges and aspirations of an intelligent, passionate and independent woman writer of the early Romantic period. Through an introductory essay and comments on the text, the editors provide a framework in which to understand Seward, Darwin and their times.




Childbirth: Changing Ideas and Practices in Britain and America, 1600 to the Present
Philip K. Wilson, Ph.D
. (co-edited with Ann Dally and Charles R. King)

This five-volume series provides the full medical, historical, and social context of childbirth by bringing together key articles on the expectant mother, the attendants of her delivery, and the health of the newborn infant. The articles are from British and American publications that focus upon childbirth practices over the past 300 years and are selected from both primary and secondary sources. Some are classic works in medical literature; others are from historical, sociological, anthropological and feminist literature that present a wider range of scholarly perspectives on childbirth issues.
In charting the progress of childbirth, midwifery, and obstetrics, this survey provides readers with key primary sources that illuminate the history of childbirth, midwifery and obstetrics. For example, general historical texts note that childbed (puerperal) fever claimed hundreds of thousands of maternal lives, and provoked much fear in Britain and America. The articles in this series, in addition to historical facts, also provide discussion of the causes and consequences of particular fever cases taken from the medical literature of the 19th and 20th centuries, and reveal what a challenge this disorder was to the medical profession. The articles collected in this series serve as a resource for students and teachers in various fields including history, women’s studies, human biology, sociology and anthropology. They also meet the educational needs of pre-medical and nursing students and aid pre-professional, allied health, and midwifery instructors in lesson preparations. The series examines a wide range of practical experience and offers a historical perspective on the most important developments in the history of British and American childbirth, midwifery, and obstetrics.

Chocolate as Medicine: A Quest over the Centuries
Philip K. Wilson, Ph.D.
(coauthored with W. Jeffrey Hurst)
The Mesoamerican population who lived near the indigenous cultivation sites of the “Chocolate Tree” (Theobromo cacao) had a multitude of documented applications of chocolate as medicine, ranging from alleviating fatigue to preventing heart ailments to treating snakebite. Until recently, these applications have received little sound scientific scrutiny. Rather, it has been the reputed health claims stemming from Europe and the United States which have attracted considerable biomedical attention. This book, for the first time, describes the centuries-long quest to uncover chocolate’s potential health benefits. The authors explore variations in the types of evidence used to support chocolate’s use as medicine as well as note the ongoing tension over categorizing chocolate as food or medicine, and more recently, as functional food or nutraceutical. The authors, Wilson an historian of science and medicine, and Hurst an analytical chemist in the chocolate industry, bring their collective insights to bear upon the development of ideas and practices surrounding the use of chocolate as medicine. Chocolate’s use in this manner is explored first among the Mesoamerican peoples, then as it is transported to Europe, and back into Colonial North America. The authors then focus upon more recent bioscience experimental undertakings which have been aimed to ascertain both long-standing and novel suggestions as to chocolate’s efficacy as a medicinal and a nutritional substance. Chocolate/s reputation as the most craved food boosts this book’s appeal to food and biomedical scientists, cacao researchers, ethnobotanists, historians, folklorists, and healers of all types as well as to the general reading audience.

Surgery, Skin and Syphilis: Daniel Turner’s London (1667-1741)
Philip K. Wilson, Ph.D.
This book examines the personal, professional, and genteel achievements of Enlightenment London surgeon turned physician, Daniel Turner in a way which enhances our understanding of the boundary between surgeons and physicians in Enlightenment ‘marketplace’ practice. Turner’s pioneering writing on skin disease, De Morbis Cutaneis, emphasizes the skin’s role as a physical and professional boundary between university-educated physicians who treated internal disease and apprentice-trained surgeons relegated to the care of external disorders. Turner also argued that a pregnant woman’s imagination could be transferred to her unborn child, imprinting its skin with various marks and deformities. This stance sparked a major pamphlet war between Turner and London physician James Blondel, raising this phenomenon from a folk belief to a chief concern of Enlightenment natural philosophy. Turner’s career-long crusade against quackery and his voluminous writings on syphilis, a common ‘surgical’ disorder, provide a refined view into distinctions between orthodox and quack practices in 18th-Century London. Turner, long viewed as a pioneer in British dermatology, also holds the Anglo-American distinction of receiving a medical degree from Yale, the first such degree offered from Colonial America.

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