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It’s funny because it’s true. Hypochondriacs live in fear of sickness, imagining exposure to deadly contagion or being victimized by medical malpractice. Although not possessed of a background in medicine, author Ian Landau has painstakingly researched and outlined the direst details any hypochondriac could hear. Rare diseases and their bizarre symptoms are described in this efficient guidebook in creepy detail. Pictures are provided for oomph. Landau also provides clear confirmation that some diseases remain untreatable, and that others are yet to be identified. The data here provokes real laughs, nervous giggles, and downright horror. The title The Hypochondriac's Handbook: Syndromes, Diseases, and Ailments that Probably Should Have Killed You by Now startles the listener awake. Narrator Robert Blumenfeld walks the line between funny and terrifying.
Sure, everyone gets sick sometimes, but do you realize that plenty of those folks also die slow, unpleasant deaths from diseases that stumped even the experts at top-notch (still privately run) hospitals? That's right: There are plenty of illnesses that even physicians have never heard about. Nodding Disease, Alice in Wonderland Syndrome, and Cutaneous Horn (yes, you grow a horn) are all featured here in pithy, energetic entries. You won't have to worry about socialized medicine if you have this book - even if your doc could see you within a month, you might die due to his ignorance.
Lucky for you and your loved ones, Ian Landau (who has no medical training but is a hell of a researcher) includes descriptions of each disease Background and history, how to diagnose yourself and others, suggested treatments, prevention methods. The book is not for the faint of heart, as it probably could cause cardiac arrest. (And you ain't coming back from that without Ian's help.)