Acknowledgments

Surviving cancer and living with the long-term consequences of the illness is not a simple process. While many survivors simply go on with their lives, still others experience episodic or persistent challenges that justify attention. Cancer is now often referred to as a "chronic illness." As many with chronic illnesses will tell you there are a set of challenges that often go along with living with an illness. That is what this book is all about. Providing the state of the scientific literature related to the burden of these problems, current understanding of the factors that impact these challenges and evidence-based approaches to help manage them is the focus of this book.

As a researcher and health care provider placed into the arena of cancer survivorship as a cancer survivor myself (malignant brain tumor), I noticed that there was no lack of information regarding cancer and its impact but as is often the case it was scattered across disciplines and journals. As I compiled information from many different fields and searched for a text book on the topic I noticed there were not many.

This Handbook covers topics from a number of diverse disciplines. The contributions from multiple disciplines provide a perspective often not found in one place even in the current Zeitgeist of interdisciplinary approaches to chronic illnesses. Professional health care providers and researchers will benefit from such a perspective and through their efforts we can impact the quality of care and quality of life of cancer survivors. Each chapter was written by highly skilled scientists and clinicians. They are leaders in their respective fields from around the world. I would like to formally thank each one of these authors for their excellent work. Their ability to synthesiZe the literature from a clinically relevant perspective as well as generate suggestions for future research, practice, and/or policy is extraordinary. Their efforts will benefit thousands of us who receive more comprehensive, thoughtful care as a result.

I also want to thank my family. My wife Shelley and daughter Erica have lived with my preoccupation with this project. Thank you. My children, Sara and Andrew, son-in-law Umang and grandson Kiran provide a source of support for which I am forever grateful for. It is a joy to be part of their lives.

There are many in my professional and personal life who have provided me with much compassion. This has been the best medicine I could have had over the last few years and for that I am very thankful. My colleagues around the world have helped me move forward with my work and life. They know who they are and I would just like to say thank you. Your respect and willingness to continue to work with me means so much.

Since becoming a survivor myself I have met many other survivors at meetings, on the Internet, and in casual conversations. From talking with them it is clear there is a genuine need for a comprehensive public health approach to the challenges survivors face. Many in the public and private sectors are working toward that goal and their efforts need to be acknowledged. I also want to thank all the survivors I have encountered over the years in my roles as researcher, health care provider, and survivor. These individuals have clarified many of the subtleties involved in survivorship that often go unnoticed or are put on the back burner.

I would like to thank Jennifer A. Hansen and Karen A. Pescatore for their assistance with many aspects involved in the generation of this volume. I also want to thank Bill Tucker at Springer who believed in this project from the onset and has provided the necessary blend of professionalism, guidance, and independence. This could not have been accomplished without his support.

While survivors often say you "need to be there" to really fully understand the depths of these problems ... this is clearly not the case. As thousands of professionals, family members and friends can attest, you don't need to have cancer to understand the nature of this illness and its potential impact on a person's or family's function, well-being and long-term physical health. Therefore, as health professionals, students of the health professions, families, friends, and policy makers we can all learn to play a critical role in helping to understand, solve, better manage, or share the many challenges andjoys cancer survivor's face.

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