Based on responses to his earlier books – Pernicious Anaemia: the forgotten disease, and Living with Pernicious Anaemia – and on the daily enquiries and cries for help that come to the Pernicious Anaemia Society, Society-founder Martyn Hooper brings together the essential knowledge that sufferers and their families and friends need to understand, and withstand, vitamin B12 deficiency and pernicious anaemia. Martyn discusses the many uncertainties and difficulties associated with the condition, what these may mean for sufferers, the huge variations in individual experience, and how to live as fully as possible despite having the condition. Ending on a positive note, he looks to future developments and the changes they may bring.

Compared with the previous book – an excellent excursion into the intricate whys and wherefores of P.A. and a mine of useful and practical information – this one covers further related subjects, such as other pathologies, co-existing with vitamin B12 deficiency and how they can lead to a misdiagnosis; the thorny issue of food fortification; future developments and even, a possible cure.

Martyn Hooper writes on this fascinating subject extremely well, with a chatty style and the natural flair of someone who not only knows exactly what he is writing about but with that extra gift of clarity that makes the reader feel he understands every word!

The background science is well explained and there is the right amount to allow the reader to fully comprehend the functions and ramifications of vitamin B12 and what happens when it all goes horribly wrong.

This book is holistic and all encompassing, discussing not only the detail but the wider context such as increasing population and the need to provide vitamin B12-rich foods – mainly meat, although large portions are quite unnecessary.

This book comes highly recommended and well endorsed by experts. I can only hope that this review does it the justice it deserves, echo the experts’ praise and quote, “A must-read for patients and doctors alike.

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Mary Farmer

for the online magazine ‘Independent Living