Living in the Labyrinth: A Personal Journey Through the Maze of Alzheimer's Disease

Diana Friel Mcgowin, Author
Diana Friel Mcgowin, Author Elder Books $10.95 (0p) ISBN 978-0-943873-18-3
Reviewed on: 09/28/1992
Release date: 10/01/1992
Hardcover - 147 pages - 978-0-385-31186-1
Paperback - 180 pages - 978-0-385-31318-6
Hardcover - 246 pages - 978-0-7862-0066-5
Paperback - 246 pages - 978-0-7862-0067-2
Analog Audio Cassette - 978-0-7862-9976-8
Hardcover - 142 pages - 978-0-9518684-2-3
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The last person one might expect to write a book about Alzheimer's disease is somebody sick with it. And yet McGowin, a middle-aged legal assistant living in Florida, here describes the slipping away of her life: she became confused easily, couldn't remember how to do her job, had to ``retire early,'' and didn't even know what was causing all of this disorientation. Unfortunately, she didn't have the most supportive of husbands, and was too embarrassed to confide in her children. Several physicians she consulted ``pooh-poohed'' her deteriorating condition with the all-too-familiar ``see a psychiatrist'' routine. Finally, after extensive medical and psychological testing, a doctor made the definitive diagnosis--early-onset Alzheimer's disease. Make no mistake: this wrenching account is neither a ``pity me'' look at Alzheimer's nor a standard autobiography. Instead, it is the story of how a woman took charge of her life under difficult circumstances. Friel tells how she relearned everyday tasks most often taken for granted. She also shows how habits and relationships had to change to meet new needs and challenges. She includes appendices of warning symptoms and national organizations that may be of help to Alzheimer's sufferers and their families. (Jan.)
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