Skip navigation
Hardcover | Out of Print | ISBN: 9780262121804 | 693 pp. | 7 x 9 in | April 1994
Paperback | $43.95 Trade | £32.95 | ISBN: 9780262621045 | 693 pp. | 7 x 9 in | February 1996

Choices in Healing

Integrating the Best of Conventional and Complementary Approaches


Written by one of the country's leading authorities on alternative and complementary cancer treatments, Choices in Healing is designed for the cancer patient or health professional who seeks a comprehensive overview of the available choices, both in treatments and in living with cancer.

Choices in Healing offers valuable information and guidance for the whole life cycle of cancer—from the initial shock of diagnosis to decisions about choosing a physician and conventional therapies, selecting complementary therapies, coping with treatment, and the art of living fully with the possibility of recurrence.

There are detailed explanations and evaluations of a wide range of complementary therapy programs, including spiritual and psychological approaches, nutritional therapies, physical therapies, pharmacological therapies, and traditional medicines from around the world. There are sections on prayer and other forms of spiritual healing; psychotherapy, support groups, visual imagery and hypnosis; massage, therapeutic touch, yoga, and Qi Gong; macrobiotic diet and other cancer diets; acupuncture and Chinese herbal medicines; and numerous other unconventional therapies used by American cancer patients.

With an unusual combination of compassion and objectivity, Michael Lerner describes his conclusions following more than a decade of study of unconventional cancer treatments in North America, Europe, India, and Japan. He also draws extensively on his work with hundreds of cancer patients who have participated in the Commonweal Cancer Help Programs, the residential support program depicted by Bill Moyers in his 1993 PBS documentary Healing and the Mind.


“I think this is a remarkable book. It is quite free of bias, and takes serious looks at both advantages and disadvantages of conventional treatment, and the remarkable spectrum of other and non-traditional healing. He never says bullshit, even when others, especially physicians, might. This book is not for those who are completely satisfied with the outcomes, and with current treatment of patients with cancer. It covers many non-traditional forms of treatment, from weird diets to vitamins and immunotherapy, and suggests their addition to more conventional treatment, not as a substitute. It is rich in consideration of psychological elements in the course of cancer, and it is full of information for those who want to seek their own input into their own life, illness, feelings, and treatment.”
Laurens P. White, M.D., Clinical Professor of Medicine, University of California; Former President, California Medical Association
“The diagnosis of cancer too often brings with it a sense of limited freedom, choice, and possibility. What a refreshing and powerful antidote Choices in Healing is for any patient and their family facing cancer. By reviewing both conventional and unconventional approaches to cancer in an even-handed and open-minded manner, the book offers many reasons for cautious optimism in cancer treatment without fanning the flames of false hope. The book is a unique compendium, a valuable service for both patients and practitioners.”
David S. Sobel, M.D., Director of PAtient Education and Health Promotion
“Here we have a truly remarkable book. Unlike anything in thealternative literature, Choices in Healing gives ascrupulously nonjudgemental review of the world of alternativetreatments for cancer. Michael Lerner is a talented, scientifically astute and well-educated individual...His compilation of both orthodox and alternative approaches to cancer is superb...This is essential reading.”
Karol Sikora, New Scientist
“A bridge that many skeptics can at least approach. The text is both critical and hopeful toward both conventional and complementary methods of therapy. Physicans will certainly find this book, with its in-depth index and extensive appendixed resource guide, the best single available source if they are willing to explore this area.”
John M. Merrill, M.D., Journal of the American Medical Association
“I urge anyone dealing with cancer to read Michael Lerner's excellent book.”
Andrew Weil, M.D., author of Spontaneous Healing; Natural Health, Natural Medicine; and many other books