Baron-Faust/Buyon: The Autoimmune Connection

Cover: The Autoimmune Connection

Cover: The Autoimmune Connection


Rita Baron-Faust, M.P.H., C.H.E.S. (NASW Member) with Jill P. Buyon, M.D.
McGraw-Hill, April 16, 2016, $22.00
ISBN-10: 0071841229
ISBN-13: 978-0071841221

Baron-Faust reports:

How could our body turn on itself without warning?

I was riveted by that question, posed at the Congress on Women’s Health in 1992, by Virginia Ladd, founder of the then-fledgling American Autoimmune Related Diseases Association (AARDA). Patients can have several autoimmune diseases with overlapping symptoms. Connections must be made, or a diagnosis can be missed.

Rita Baron-Faust

Rita Baron-Faust

Many women told me they had a hard time having their symptoms taken seriously. So I felt compelled to write a book that would help educate physicians in multiple medical specialties as well as their patients.

The book covers autoimmune diseases more common in women, including rheumatoid arthritis, lupus, Sjögren’s Syndrome, scleroderma, multiple sclerosis, immune thrombocytopenia, and inflammatory bowel disease. The book talks about the effects these diseases have on women’s lives and the impact of the new healthcare landscape.

The first edition of the book, published in 2004, got good reviews, sold out at AARDA patient forums, and earned royalties. Even so, selling an update wasn’t easy. By the time the contract was signed, I was facing a decade of new data.

And there were other challenges.

My husband and I were preparing to move. I was writing literally up until the minute my PC had to be packed. McGraw-Hill outsourced the copy editing to India; time zone differences made editing and communication problematic. Expert peer review and fact-checking seemed to go on forever.

Technology saved me.

Instead of filing hard copies of studies, I had downloaded PDFs. When text was approved, I had an email record. I saved interviews as MP3s. End Note helped organize citations. I created a digital filing cabinet for the book and stored it on a portable hard drive. This enabled me to easily double-check facts or edits, and provided a fail-safe should my PC or notebook crash.

We moved into our new apartment the same day the book came out.

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May 25, 2016

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