Chasing My Cure: A Doctor's Race to Turn Hope Into Action; A Memoir

Chasing My Cure: A Doctor's Race to Turn Hope Into Action; A Memoir Details

The powerful memoir of a young doctor and former college athlete diagnosed with a rare disease who spearheaded the search for a cure--and became a champion for a new approach to medical research.

"An extraordinary memoir . . . It belongs with Atul Gawande's writings and When Breath Becomes Air."--Adam Grant, New York Times bestselling author of Originals

David Fajgenbaum, a former Georgetown quarterback, was nicknamed the Beast in medical school, where he was also known for his unmatched mental stamina. But things changed dramatically when he began suffering from inexplicable fatigue. In a matter of weeks, his organs were failing and he was read his last rites. Doctors were baffled by his condition, which they had yet to even diagnose. Floating in and out of consciousness, Fajgenbaum prayed for a second chance, the equivalent of a dramatic play to second the game into overtime.

Miraculously, Fajgenbaum survived--only to endure repeated near-death relapses from what would eventually be identified as a form of Castleman disease, an extremely deadly and rare condition that acts like a cross between cancer and an autoimmune disorder. When he relapsed while on the only drug in development and realized that the medical community was unlikely to make progress in time to save his life, Fajgenbaum turned his desperate hope for a cure into concrete action: Between hospitalizations he studied his own charts and tested his own blood samples, looking for clues that could unlock a new treatment. With the help of family, friends, and mentors, he also reached out to other Castleman disease patients and physicians, and eventually came up with an ambitious plan to crowdsource the most promising research questions and recruit world-class researchers to tackle them. Instead of waiting for the scientific stars to align, he would attempt to align them himself.

More than five years later and now married to his college sweetheart, Fajgenbaum has seen his hard work pay off: A treatment he identified has induced a tentative remission and his novel approach to collaborative scientific inquiry has become a blueprint for advancing rare disease research. His incredible story demonstrates the potency of hope, and what can happen when the forces of determination, love, family, faith, and serendipity collide.

Praise for Chasing My Cure

"A page-turning chronicle of living, nearly dying, and discovering what it really means to be invincible in hope."--Angela Duckworth, #1 New York Times bestselling author of Grit

"[A] remarkable memoir . . . Fajgenbaum writes lucidly and movingly . . . Fajgenbaum's stirring account of his illness will inspire readers."--Publishers Weekly

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Title:Chasing My Cure: A Doctor's Race to Turn Hope Into Action; A Memoir
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    Chasing My Cure: A Doctor's Race to Turn Hope Into Action; A Memoir Reviews

  • Holly

    ...“will” is that extra fight that emerges when there seems to be no more hope.Chasing My Cure: A Doctor’s Race to Turn Hope Into Action is an inspirational memoir that follows a medical student...

  • Elyse  Walters by the author/doctor David FajenbaumThis non-fiction/memoir was gripping-fascinating-very engaging to listen to. David Fajenbaum, nicknamed ‘The Beast’ in medical school, with hi...

  • Cheryl

    David Fajgenbaum seemed to have a charmed life. He had a loving and supportive family and a close knit group of friends. He’d been the state champion weight lifter in high school, was the quarterbac...

  • India M. Clamp

    Dr. Fajgenbaum is expository and inside we meet familiar friends named Borat, multiple organ failure and his earned epithet of “Beast” (weightlifting accolades during his football episode at Georg...

  • Julie

    “Chasing My Cure” is an amazing story of one Doctor’s race against time to find a treatment for Castleman Disease before it takes his own life. It is a story of courage and perseverance even whe...

  • Tzipora

    Wow! Chasing My Cure was in interesting read I’m still trying to wrap my head around. I have multiple rare diseases (or perhaps one overarching and yet unnamed, this tends to be my personal theory) ...

  • Nancy

    While inspiring, this is not a book to read for enjoyment or escapism. Heavy on technical medical terminology and treatments so most likely of greatest interest to those suffering from a "rare" diseas...

  • Mbgirl

    For its incredible telling, for its miraculous course, for the author’s indomitable fortitude,4 stars.The writing was not that wonderful for me, but then again, ‘it’s not why I chose to read it....

  • Cindy

    What an inspiration! The author is clearly a brilliant scientist, doctor and researcher who is also a great storyteller and he has the rare knack of making complex topics understandable for the lay re...

  • Hailey

    I truly enjoyed this book.I read it in the span of a day. The writing is compelling and humorous, despite discussing a situation that is anything but. Those who know me know that I am a total biology ...