Culture, Health and Illness: An Introduction for Health Professionals covers basic ideas and research in medical anthropology. The book starts by discussing the scope of medical anthropology and the cultural definitions of anatomy and physiology, including the body structure and its functions. The text describes the clinical significance of food in diet and nutrition, social and cultural aspects of medical pluralism and health care. Doctor-patient interactions; social, psychological and cultural factors associated with pain; and non-pharmacological influences of medication, in relation to placebos, psychotropic and narcotic drugs, alcohol, and tobacco are also considered. The book then covers the type of rituals that relate to health and illness and the management of misfortune. The text also encompasses transcultural psychiatry, the cultural aspects of stress, and cultural factors in epidemiology. The selection is useful to health professions (doctors, nurses, midwives, health visitors, medical social workers, and nutritionists); those involved in health education or foreign medical aid; undergraduate students taking up these disciplines; and those studying anthropology or sociology.
Culture, Health and Illness
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