Icon Health Publications issues patient's guide on diabetic retinopathy for the Internet age

San Diego 29 October 2002Icon Health Publications has launched a comprehensive manual for anyone interested in self-directed research on diabetic retinopathy. "The Official Patient's Sourcebook on Diabetic Retinopathy" is fully referenced with ample Internet listings and glossary, and addresses all a patient should know about diabetes retinopathy; insulin-dependent diabetes retinopathy; non-insulin dependent diabetes mellitus retinopathy; non-proliferative diabetic retinopathy; and proliferative diabetic retinopathy.

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The book has been created for patients who have decided to make education and research an integral part of the treatment process. Although it gives information useful to doctors, caregivers and other health professionals, it specifically tells patients where and how to look for information covering virtually all topics related to diabetic retinopathy and related conditions, from the essentials to the most advanced areas of research.

The title includes the word "official". This reflects the fact that the sourcebook draws from public, academic, government, and peer-reviewed research. Selected readings from various agencies have been reproduced to provide readers some of the latest official information available to date on diabetic retinopathy.

Given patients' increasing sophistication in using the Internet, abundant references to reliable Internet-based resources are provided throughout this sourcebook. Where possible, guidance is provided on how to obtain free-of-charge, primary research results as well as more detailed information via the Internet.

E-book and electronic versions of this sourcebook are fully interactive with each of the Internet sites mentioned by clicking on a hyperlink which automatically opens the patient's browser to the site indicated. Hard-copy users of the sourcebook can type cited Web addresses directly into their browsers to obtain access to the corresponding sites. In addition to extensive references accessible via the Internet, chapters include glossaries of technical or uncommon terms.

The sourcebook is organised into three parts. Part I explores basic techniques to researching diabetic retinopathy such as finding guidelines on diagnosis, treatments, and prognosis, followed by a number of topics, including information on how to get in touch with organisations, associations, or other patient networks dedicated to diabetic retinopathy. It also offers sources of information helping to find a doctor in the patient's local area specialising in treating diabetic retinopathy. Collectively, the material presented in Part I is a complete primer on basic research topics for patients with diabetic retinopathy.

Part II moves on to advanced research dedicated to diabetic retinopathy. Part II is intended for those willing to invest many hours of hard work and study. The reader is directed to the latest scientific and applied research on diabetic retinopathy. When possible, contact names, links via the Internet, and summaries are provided. It is in Part II where the vocabulary process becomes important as authors publishing advanced research frequently use highly specialised language. In general, every attempt is made to recommend "free-to-use" options.

Part III provides appendices of useful background reading for all patients with diabetic retinopathy or related disorders. The appendices are dedicated to more pragmatic issues faced by many patients with diabetic retinopathy. Accessing materials via medical libraries may be the only option for some readers, so a guide is provided for finding local medical libraries which are open to the public. Part III, therefore, focuses on advice that goes beyond the biological and scientific issues facing patients with diabetic retinopathy.

"The Official Patient's Sourcebook on Diabetic Retinopathy" with ISBN 0597832374 has 252 pages and can be ordered by telephone at the price of USD 24,95 at 800-843-2665 within the United States and at +1-201-272-3651 from outside the United States.


Leslie Versweyveld

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