Daniel J. Wallace. The Lupus Book: A Guide for Patients and Their Families. 5th ed. Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013. $29.95. pp. 304. Hardback. ISBN‐13 978‐0‐19‐992940‐5.

AuthorAngela Matysiak
Published date01 December 2015
Date01 December 2015
Book Review
Daniel J. Wallace. The Lupus Book: A Guide for Patients and Their Families. 5th ed.
Oxford: Oxford University Press, 2013. $29.95. pp. 304. Hardback. ISBN-13 978-0-
Systemic lupus erythematosus (SLE) affects an estimated 1.5 million people in
the United States. More widespread than leukemia, multiple sclerosis, cystic
f‌ibrosis, and muscular dystrophy combined, lupus is nine times more common in
young women than in men and it affects more Blacks, Hispanics, Asians, and
Native Americans than Whites. Approved by the Lupus Foundation of America,
the book under review addresses important issues faced by patients and their
families, such as the signif‌icance of early diagnosis, and the urgent need for
prompt and individualized treatment. This book is all the more needed because
despite good diagnostic tools and new treatment options, public awareness of
lupus remains limited and thousands of patients currently do not receive
Drawing from decades of clinical experience with over 2000 lupus patients,
the author, a clinical professor of medicine at the University of California, Los
Angeles, wants to empower patients and family members to chart a course based
on their specif‌ic condition and identify issues (butterf‌ly rashes) or questions (Can
a woman with lupus get pregnant?) that are most important to them. The author
conceptualized his book primarily as an easily usable guidebook for quick
reference and for a general audience. But Wallace also seeks to go beyond cursory
explanations and management recommendations, which may appeal to a more
scientif‌ically minded readership. Throughout the book, the author uses technical
language to explain the various complex scientif‌ic and medical concepts and
mechanisms behind the disease. However, since Wallace attempts to make
technical language palatable to the lay reader, many patients and family members
may f‌ind themselves encouraged to dive deeper into the more complex technical
issues of lupus. The book is divided into f‌ive parts, dealing with the origin and
development of lupus, its causes, diagnosis, and treatment.
Without a doubt, this book greatly advances our knowledge of the disease. At
various points, the author does an excellent job of providing understandable
World Medical & Health Policy, Vol. 7, No. 4, 2015
1948-4682 #2015 Policy Studies Organization
Published by Wiley Periodicals, Inc., 350 Main Street, Malden, MA 02148, USA, and 9600 Garsington Road, Oxford, OX4 2DQ.

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