1. Neal-Boylan, Leslie PhD, RN, CRRN, APRN-BC

Article Content

Katz, A. (2007).Breaking the silence on cancer and sexuality.Pittsburgh: Oncology Nursing Society.


This book is long overdue. Clinicians don't always broach the topic of sexuality with patients. This book makes it abundantly clear that a discussion of sexuality with people who have cancer is vitally important. The book sets the stage by discussing why sexuality is so important in the context of cancer and reviews sexual function and sexual health assessment. It then continues to discuss the impact of cancer on people with various types of cancer: breast, prostate, gynecological, testicular, colorectal, hematologic, bladder, penis, and cancers of the head, neck, and brain. These chapters are easy-to-read and offer straightforward, practical information that any clinician can use to help patients help themselves. Several case studies are offered and are analyzed using three models to illustrate important points. Additionally, the appendices list questions that stimulate critical thinking about the case studies.


The book also addresses the impact of cancer on the individual and family, specific to stage of life (adolescent, adult, older adult), stage of the disease (the terminally ill), and one's relationship to others (couples, gays, and lesbians). Treatment modalities, tools, resources, and research conclude the book and add to its comprehensive and poignant look at this extremely important topic.


Missing from the book is any background on the expertise of the author, other than that she is a registered nurse with a PhD. Further, several of the references are old. However, they may be classic or seminal works and are included for that reason. The book can be obtained from the Oncology Nursing Society, 125 Enterprise Dr., Pittsburgh, PA 15275-1214 or


Leslie Neal-Boylan, PhD, RN, CRRN, APRN-BC


Contact Leslie at (e-mail).