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Heath and Medicine Reviews

Med Head: My Drugged-Up Battle with My Brain by James Patterson

med head

I read this book in one sitting.  It was that good.

Together, James Patterson and Hal Friedman wrote this book from Hal’s son Cory’s perspective:  a boy tormented by uncontrolled Tourette’s, OCD, and anxiety.  Diagnosed at age 5, Cory was compelled to move his body in awkward and painful ways. He would repeat phrases till it exhausted the listener. He visited multiple doctors, took numerous meds, only to experience side effects with little to no help for his tics and obsessions.

Cory tried to fit in. If the kids at school were laughing at him he would cope by being the class clown. His parents were sure they would find a cure, and as the years passed Cory stayed determined to rise above his illness. Even through suffering with unwanted drug side effects and the darkness of depression, he did not give up.

real and trueI think I loved the story so much because it was gritty and honest. Cory’s story would encourage others who are faced with similar difficulties to never give up, no matter how bleak, or how awful a person’s challenge might be, there is always another day, another chance, and if you reach deep inside there can be found a strength we never would have found  had we not been brought so close to the edge.

This is an amazing, humbling read. Cory’s journey is tough, and if his mental illness wasn’t enough to battle he had nicotine and alcohol addictions too. No, this is not a feel good tickle your toes kind of read, but it is not a disastrous downer either.  Everyone can take at least one thing away from Med Head – if you have hope you can get through anything.

sunset

By Kathy

I am a Nurse Practitioner from Rochester, NY presently working in both the inpatient and outpatient hospital psychiatric settings.

2 replies on “Med Head: My Drugged-Up Battle with My Brain by James Patterson”

Thank you Kathy.

As a stage IV cancer survivor, I can relate to the effects of chemo, both mentally and physically. I’d wager a guess that my mental stamina is about 80% of what it was prior, and over the 5 years since, I’ve had to regain the motor control in my right hand to be able to write legibly.

The good news is that in both aspects, I see improvement with time and practice. For those suffering side effects, know that they are not permanent.

We have such a phenomenal arsenal of agents to use to treat devastating and life threatening diseases process such as cancer and neurological illnesses. It is unfortunate the side effects can be so severe. I can’t imagine what it must have been like for you to face your diagnosis and treatment. I am so happy to hear you are a survivor! Thank you Randy for sharing your story and good news. I wish you continued good health.

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