Carol Gino Rusty's Story

ISBN 13: 9781889853192

Rusty's Story

4.15 avg rating
( 39 ratings by Goodreads )
 
9781889853192: Rusty's Story

What Can You Do When the Doctors Are Wrong? Epilepsy Misdiagnosed The doctors made mistakes with Rusty some very big mistakes. But it wasn t so much a shocking misdiagnosis as it was a misdiagnosis with shocking consequences. The diagnosis was that Rusty was paranoid schizophrenic. And because of that diagnosis, because of that label, Rusty was committed to a state mental hospital on and off for over four years. But the doctors were wrong. What Rusty really had was epilepsy. And because they were unable to see that, she was locked up at the age of fifteen and prevented from living a reasonably normal life. Rusty used to wonder if she would make it through the day, seeing danger in everyday living. She was twenty when Carol Gino met her and learned of her past ordeals: the stigma of mental illness, the drugs that took away her self-control, the treatments that only worsened her symptoms. Carol and Rusty set out to prove that illness can be overcome, and that there is no substitute for love and care. Rusty s Story is a story of genuine courage and dignity. A story about what human beings could be at their best in spite of incredible pain and suffering.

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About the Author:

Carol Gino has been a nurse, author, and teacher for many years. Her first book was The Nurse s Story. She did two cross-country tours for The Nurse s Story : which included TV, radio, and print media. Ms. Gino s second book, Rusty s Story received the Epilepsy Association s National Book Award and was on the New York Times bestseller list for 5 weeks. She began her own publishing house called Starwater Press Ltd. in 1987. Since then she has started aaha! Books. Carol Gino was the long time companion of author Mario Puzo for 20 years until his death in 1999 and in 2001 completed his book The Family.

Review:

The true story of one young woman s nightmare battle with epilepsy, told by the registered nurse with whom she lived. Gino first meets Barbara Russell (Rusty) when Rusty is 19 and they are both working at a nursing home. Four years earlier, Rusty was diagnosed as having severe epilepsy. Even with medication, the blackouts and seizures continued. After one violent seizure, she attempted suicide and was placed in a mental hospital, with brutal guards, violent patients, and lack of adequate care. Only Rusty s strength and belief in herself helped her survive. When her attacks resumed, she left Gino s house, but Gino continued to try to find the right physician and treatment. An epilogue shows that Rusty made it through college and has become an independent, accepted member of society. Rusty s story covers approximately 15 years, but the feeling is one of an immediate event. Gino s involvement, intensity, and anger at the medical establishment moves readers into an empathy for Rusty and horror at the ignorance of some physicians and the world at large. Teens who enjoy the books of Torey Hayden, Eleanor Craig, or Mary MacCracken will also like this one. --Diana Hirsch, PGCMLS, Md

While many advancements have been made in understanding and treating epilepsy, the disease is still surrounded by an aura of dread. Rusty was a teenager when she was stricken with epilepsy. Misdiagnosed as a paranoid schizophrenic, for years she suffered more from inappropriate medical treatment than from her condition. The reader is mesmerized as Gino passionately relates Rusty s plight. Despite repeated incarcerations in a frightful state mental institution and the toxic effects of drugs, she never lost her sense of humanity or her strong desire to help others. Gino s deep distrust of the medical establishment, her fervent attachment to nursing, and her conviction that the patient knows best are themes that are interwoven into the emotional story of Rusty s fight for a normal life. --Carol R. Glatt, Helene Fuld Medical Center Lib., Trenton, N.J.

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