To take advantage of the latest medical advances, and to deal with the often-confusing world of health care, you need information that is clear, accurate, easily understandable, and accessible. The Harvard Medical School Family Health Guide brings you the information you need to keep your and your family healthy and to cope with illness when it does strike.
170 faculty members of Harvard Medical School, physicians who care for patients every day, developed this comprehensive guide. Special features in the Harvard Medical School Family Health Guide book include:
- Symptom charts: What do you do when you develop a particular symptom? These easy-to-follow charts will help you determine how you may be able to treat yourself, and when you need to contact the physician.
- Advice for when you visit your doctor: What should you discuss with your doctor and which exams and laboratory tests should you have regularly? The guidance offered in this chapter will help you think about your medical questions before your visit. Knowing what to expect when you see your doctor can also help you determine how thorough your care has been.
- Advice on understanding medicines: Medicines chapter has an extensive chart of possible adverse reactions between different drugs. If you are taking more than one medication, or if you are taking conventional medications and herbal preparations, you need to know if there might be a dangerous interaction between them. We can show you what these might be.
- Advice on understanding diagnostic tests: Modern medicine uses many diagnostic tests. We describe these tests, why they might be needed, and what you can expect before, during, and after your exam.
- Advice on alternative and complementary treatments: Harvard Medical School and other institutions are carefully studying a variety of alternative medicine. Some of these therapies have proved helpful and others risk. We tell you about them in the Harvard Medical School Family Health Guide.
- Benefit and risk-assessment graphs: There is so much health information available and, often, more than one treatment for a problem. How do you choose among them? We provide information in easy-to-follow graphs about the benefits and risks of various diagnostic tests and treatments and the benefits of lifestyle changes to keep healthy.
- Personal stories, and specific advice from Harvard doctors: We present the personal statements of people who have suffered from an illness, and sometimes how they have coped with it. Some of the best doctors on the Harvard Medical School faculty have provided personal words of advice based on their experience - the advice they give their own patients.
Learn more about the Family Health Guide.