Wednesday, August 18, 2010

How Not To Drop Dead

In his book, ‘How Not to Drop Dead,’ author Eduardo Chapunoff provides a comprehensive guide on 201 causes of sudden or rapid death and how to avoid them. He explains that prevention is the best way to avoid sudden or rapid death. As Chapunoff wittily states, “Meeting death at the corner of he next block because of negligence, carelessness, or sloppiness, is particularly sad and also kind of stupid.”

Chapunoff describes 201 wide ranging conditions, situations, and illnesses, such as strokes, depression, shark attack, sex and erotic asphyxiation, electrocution, drug overdose…etc., and details how each condition leads to sudden or rapid death. He discusses what happens biologically, risk factors, how the conditions are diagnosed, treatment, who is at risk, and prevention measures. The book is much more than a guide on maintaining good health as certain conditions have specific prevention measures such as making changes in the home, wearing the proper helmet when playing certain sports, immunization, learning techniques for stress reduction, practicing proper sanitary measures, adding a carbon monoxide detector in the home…etc.

‘How Not To Drop Dead’ is a very thorough guide with a common sense style of writing that makes it easy to understand, even by readers who do not have a medical background. After reading the book, readers will feel empowered to take charge of their own health and well being. The book does not read like a medical textbook as Chapunoff provides witty anecdotes and stories about his experience as a cardiologist and many years of Internal Medicine practice as well. For instance, he tells a story about a medical student who was working with a cadaver in the morgue and accidentally stuck his finger with a needle he was using to suture some tissue and died of sepsis in 36 hours. In the section on abdominal trauma, he relates the case of man who walked into the emergency room after being stabbed with a knife in his belly and was holding his intestines with his bare hands. One of the most dramatic experiences Chapunoff describes in the section of shark attack is a personal one: how he survived his own confrontation with a blue shark that headed directly toward him. “There was no time to escape. There was no time to pray…”

I highly recommend ‘How Not to Drop Dead’ as a well researched and informative read that will teach readers how to take control of their health and well being and empower them to make the necessary changes in their lives to prevent sudden or rapid death. It is a very positive book that imparts immense knowledge with frankness and clarity.

Tracy Roberts, Write Field Services


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