Book Review: Body Signs – From Warning Signs to False Alarms…How To Be Your Own Diagnostic Detective


Every patient over the course of their disease will learn the tell tale signs pointing to their body entering a “flare up”.
I am one of those patients who know their body like a road map. I know every scar, every blemish, every black and blue. I have learned that any change, addition, or variation of these are hints and clues as to what lies on the road before me.
I find myself at times analyzing my own body like a detective on a mystery case. The book Body Signs is a fantastic book that offers even more insight to the clues our body naturally gives us to understand our own state of health. I found this book interesting, but also re-assuring to the self awareness I already had.

Body Signs is an atypical health reference book of normal physiological functioning and physical indicators of illness for adults. The authors differentiate between “symptoms” (such as pain or fatigue) that only the patient can describe and “signs” (like dry or brittle hair and nails) that can be observed by others and are objective indicators that something may be wrong.
The book is written in normal, easy to understand language and can be used in a variety of ways. It is not overburdened with thick medical jargon and confusing terminology. You can read from cover to cover, or you can skip ahead (like me) and read about the symptoms that interest you most. I also like the little information boxes on the sides of the pages which include significant facts, interesting anecdotes, and more.
The book includes three appendices: one containing a body signs review, one suggesting relevant websites and books, and one which is a “checkup checklist”. Be forewarned, that this book is not for the hypochondriac, or for the elderly. I could see someone reading this book and self diagnosing a long list of diseases due to more common “signs”.
I would recommend this book for anyone interested in the human body, and anyone who finds themselves wondering what “those wacky symptoms” can be. If you are looking for a true “just the facts” health reference guide, this might not be the book for you. I personally enjoyed this book, because I have experienced many of the books signs and symptoms, but a relatively healthy person may ask: Why buy the book? I can say that after only a month, I have already mentioned and suggested he book several times to friends and family when they have mentioned seemingly silly things like too much earwax, or funny colored urine.
We all have those embarrassing symptoms from time to time that we might be too shy to ask a doctor or friend about. Now you just might have found the book to help you.

Book Review written by Christine Miserandino, © 2008
Authors: Joan Liebmann-Smith Ph.D., Jacqueline Egan
Hardcover: 322 pages
Publisher: Bantam
ISBN-10: 055380507X
Click to read an excerpt from the book called 7 WARNING SIGNS OF CANCER YOU MAY MISS