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Infectious: A doctor’s eye-opening insights into contagious diseases by [Bowden, Frank]
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Infectious: A doctor’s eye-opening insights into contagious diseases Kindle Edition

5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review

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Length: 256 pages Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled Page Flip: Enabled
Language: English

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Product Description

A woman’s innocuous cold symptoms mask a debilitating rare tick infection. A young man develops shingles then suffers blinding head pain later in life. After years of frustration, a family eradicates head lice forever.
Infectious follows on from Frank Bowden’s 2011 Gone Viral but deals much more with everyday infectious diseases - the flu, colds, sore throats and head lice.

It also tackles topical and critical issues in modern medical practice - the emergence of antibiotic resistance, the Ebola epidemic, the Lyme Disease controversy and the causes of chronic fatigue.
Praise for Gone Viral
‘Witty, engaging and poignant’ — Fiona Capp, the Age
‘An excellent storyteller’ — Leigh Dayton, the Australian

‘A wonderful communicator, but also a skilled educator and visionary medical professional’
— Catriona Ooi, Royal Australian College of Physicians News



Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 1243 KB
  • Print Length: 256 pages
  • Publisher: NewSouth (1 April 2016)
  • Sold by: Amazon Australia Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B01D0ZPDWQ
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Not Enabled
  • Screen Reader: Supported
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars 1 customer review
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #95,874 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Format: Kindle Edition
I was drawn by the blurb on the back cover of this book: ‘A young woman’s FLU symptoms mask a rare tick infection. A man develops SHINGLES then suffers excruciating FACIAL PAIN later in life. After years of frustration, a family eradicates HEAD LICE forever.’

I’ve never had head lice, but I’ve known plenty of people who have. And not one of them enjoyed it. Discovering and treating a rare tick infection looks pretty good to me as well, but what really caught my attention was the reference to shingles and facial pain. This is something my mother suffered from terribly at various stages in her life.

Professor Bowden has divided this book into three parts:
Part 1: The Age of Infections
Part II: The end of the Age of Antibiotics
Part III: First do no harm

There’s a lot of information in this book, delivered in a way that is easy to read and understand. Professor Bowden reminds us that:

‘The rapid growth in international travel, beginning in the 1970s, meant that the jumbo would become as important as the mosquito in the spread of disease.’

This has become especially important where patients from the developed world, by seeking cheaper medical treatment in the developing world for procedures such as dental implants, joint replacements and kidney transplants, have ‘given resistant bugs an international passport. It takes less than fourteen hours to fly from Delhi to Sydney with all your bugs on board.’

Part of this is a consequence of the increased use of broad spectrum antibiotics which has resulted in the emergence of highly resistant bacteria.
Professor Bowden also discusses Ebola and other viruses, the impact of diseases such as measles, mumps and rubella, the eradication of smallpox.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on Amazon.com (beta) (May include reviews from Early Reviewer Rewards Program)

Amazon.com: 5.0 out of 5 stars 2 reviews
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars For anyone interested in modern medicine, its failings and future directions. 2 June 2016
By Sydney reader - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
More technical than Frank Bowden's first book, Gone Viral, this is still fascinating reading for anyone vaguely interested in modern medicine. I particularly like the way the author doesn't hesitate to point out the ignorance and failings of fellow doctors when dealing with infectious disease. His comments on the future of antibiotics and their overuse should be compulsory reading for everyone. Both this book and Gone Viral are excellent non-fiction books.
3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars ‘Today antibiotic resistance has reached a crisis across the world.’ 8 June 2016
By Jennifer Cameron-Smith - Published on Amazon.com
Format: Kindle Edition
I was drawn by the blurb on the back cover of this book: ‘A young woman’s FLU symptoms mask a rare tick infection. A man develops SHINGLES then suffers excruciating FACIAL PAIN later in life. After years of frustration, a family eradicates HEAD LICE forever.’

I’ve never had head lice, but I’ve known plenty of people who have. And not one of them enjoyed it. Discovering and treating a rare tick infection looks pretty good to me as well, but what really caught my attention was the reference to shingles and facial pain. This is something my mother suffered from terribly at various stages in her life.

Professor Bowden has divided this book into three parts:
Part 1: The Age of Infections
Part II: The end of the Age of Antibiotics
Part III: First do no harm

There’s a lot of information in this book, delivered in a way that is easy to read and understand. Professor Bowden reminds us that:

‘The rapid growth in international travel, beginning in the 1970s, meant that the jumbo would become as important as the mosquito in the spread of disease.’

This has become especially important where patients from the developed world, by seeking cheaper medical treatment in the developing world for procedures such as dental implants, joint replacements and kidney transplants, have ‘given resistant bugs an international passport. It takes less than fourteen hours to fly from Delhi to Sydney with all your bugs on board.’

Part of this is a consequence of the increased use of broad spectrum antibiotics which has resulted in the emergence of highly resistant bacteria.
Professor Bowden also discusses Ebola and other viruses, the impact of diseases such as measles, mumps and rubella, the eradication of smallpox. The use and misuse of antibiotics is discussed, and I found myself wondering how many of my own antibiotic allergies or sensitivities are a consequence of frequent prescription for various childhood illnesses.

While I found the entire book interesting, informative and thought provoking, it was the last part that really made me think. Lyme disease, chronic fatigue syndrome and prostate cancer screening are all discussed. In part this is about self-diagnosis and about the difficulties in diagnosing when people present with non-specific complaints. It’s also about the proliferation of diagnostic tests, which can lead to unnecessary treatment.

Frank Bowden is Professor at the Australian National University Medical School and an Infectious Disease Physician at the Canberra Hospital. His special research interest has been population health approaches to the control of infectious diseases (especially sexually transmitted infections).

If you have any interest in public health, then I recommend this book to you. Professor Bowden raises a number of important questions in this book. You don’t have to be a medical professional to read (and understand) the issues.

Jennifer Cameron-Smith

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