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The Hypochondriac's Guide to Life. And Death.

Introduction by Dave Barry
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When every hiccup sounds like the call of doom, each stomach pang hints at incipient cancer, and a headache means it's time to firm up your last will and testament, The Hypochondriac's Guide to Life. And Death. provides just the relief you need. Gene Weingarten has spent his whole life immersed in the eclectic details of bizarre symptoms, self-diagnosing every minor ache as a potentially deadly disease. Weingarten examines:


  • The mind of a hypochondriac
  • How your doctor can kill you
  • Ulcers and other visceral fears
  • The snaps, crackles, and pops of your body that spell disaster
  • Things that can take an eye out
  • Interpreting DocSpeak


Blending the neurotic anxieties of Woody Allen, the folksiness of Garrison Keillor, and the absurdist vision of Dave Barry, Gene Weingarten conjures up a hilarious prescription for the hypochondriac that lurks inside all of us.

Photo Credit: Bill O'Leary

Gene Weingarten is a nationally syndicated humor columnist and a Pulitzer Prize–winning staff writer for The Washington Post. He lives in Washington, DC.

  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster (June 15, 2010)
  • Length: 208 pages
  • ISBN13: 9781451603248

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Alexandra Jacobs Entertainment Weekly Weingarten half-merrily, half-anxiously dispenses with journalistic objectivity...and fleshes out concerns about his own mortality in detail that's not for the squeamish.

Allen B. Weisse, M.D. Journal of the American Medical Association If laughter is therapeutic, then this guide is sure to succeed, keeping all of us -- patients and physicians alike -- in stitches.

Jackie Jones Bleecker The San Diego Union-Tribune The definitive laugh-out-loud handbook....Hilarious. And Scary.

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