The Great Katie Kate Tackles Questions About Cancer by M. Maitland DeLand, M.D.
“I wrote this book to help parents and caregivers answer the questions most commonly asked by children with cancer. In my experience, a diagnosis of cancer can so overwhelm parents that they lost the ability to communicate effectively with their children…My hope is that this book will help guide parents, children and caregivers a they search for appropriate answers to questions about cancer and develop a common understanding of the challenges facing them.” – M. Maitland DeLand, M.D.

When a child faces a worrisome condition, anxiety can short-circuit even the simplest forms of communication within a family—especially where the possibility of cancer looms.
With a brave, clear-headed heroine named The Great Katie Kate, author and radiation oncologist Dr. M. Maitland DeLand addresses the process of cancer diagnosis and treatment in children with her much-needed book The Great Katie Kate Tackles Questions About Cancer.

This outstanding children’s book (illustrated by Jennifer Zivoin) covers everything from biopsies to blood tests, CT scans to chemotherapy, hospital stays to possible hair loss, answering questions that every child, parent or caregiver wonders about when facing a cancer diagnosis.

Young Suzy has a growth on her leg that didn’t go away with the antibiotics her pediatrician gave her. Since Suzy doesn’t feel well, her parents took her to see a special doctor named Dr. DeMarco, who thinks that Suzy may have cancer.

Dr. DeMarco has an amazing friend named The Great Katie Kate, who zooms into the room on a streak of bright light. While Dr. DeMarco speaks with Suzy’s parents in another room, Katie Kate shows Suzy a large, furry critter named Worry Wombat. Katie Kate assures Suzy that by asking enough questions and smiling whenever she can, Suzy will shrink the Worry Wombat until it disappears entirely.

Katie Kate answers all of Suzy’s questions, showing her other children in the hospital who are having or will have X-rays, surgery, radiation or other treatments. By the end of the book, Suzy makes Worry Wombat disappear with her questions and optimism, much to her parent’s and doctor’s delight.

Sensitive, informative and encouraging, The Great Katie Kate Tackles Questions About Cancer belongs on the shelf of every doctor’s office, hospital, clinic and laboratory. Libraries should keep this book on hand, too, because it addresses such an important and potentially scary topic.

If you are a parent or caregiver facing a cancer diagnosis in a child, I urge you to get this book. Its honest, gentle message will demystify the diagnosis and treatment process, equipping you to handle the questions that you or your child will inevitably face. Dr. M. Maitland DeLand has done children, families and the medical community a wonderful service by writing this one-of-a-kind book.

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