KCH psychologist to publish book on parent’s guide to medical trauma

LEXINGTON, Ky. (July 14, 2021) ­­ Kentucky Children’s Hospital psychologist Meghan Marsac has teamed up with lawyer and mother of three Melissa Hogan to create their new book, “Afraid of the Doctor: Every Parent’s Guide to Preventing and Managing Medical Trauma.” The book discusses medical trauma, how to understand it, and tips for parents of sick or injured children on how to overcome it.

Marsac is a pediatric psychologist and Full Associate Professor at the University of Kentucky and Kentucky Children’s Hospital, with expertise in promoting adjustment and prevention of post-traumatic stress disorder in parents and their children with health problems. Clinically, she implements evidence-based practices to facilitate families’ management of medical treatment and emotional adjustment to difficult medical diagnoses and procedures. In addition, Marsac specializes in training medical teams in the implementation of medical care that takes trauma into account.

Hogan was inspired by her experience after her youngest child was diagnosed with Hunter Syndrome, a very rare inherited genetic disorder caused by a missing or defective enzyme. She started blogging about what she was learning from her family’s experience with her son’s condition. The blog put her in touch with a community of parents around the world whose children suffered from Hunter Syndrome or other chronic illnesses.

“When my son started seeing a lot of doctors, I started seeing these traumatic reactions,” Hogan said. “I did a lot of research and continued to see it popping up in our disease community and the special needs community. I thought, I learned a lot about it, and practically learned how to help my son, but I am by no means an expert on it. I kept seeing Meghan’s name popping up, so I wrote an email one day and said hello, this is who I am and this is my experience, and I think it would be great if we wrote a book together.

After agreeing to meet Hogan, Marsac was delighted to begin the journey of publishing this book.

“I knew that Melissa’s trip with her family might bring a perspective that I couldn’t bring as a professional,” Marsac said. “I could bring the research evidence to how we help families and the experiences that I’ve worked with families, but Melissa could also really bring that personal experience.

Medical trauma affects millions of people and can cause a variety of adverse reactions, regardless of the severity of the medical condition being treated. This is the first book written for parents with the primary purpose of equipping them with the knowledge and skills to help their children with medical challenges.

“There are several chapters in the book about experiencing medical trauma as parents, and how we identify and deal with it as parents because we want to be the mainstay of our children,” said Hogan said. parents to understand that it is okay to come home and go to your room and cry after these dates, and to support yourself by taking care of yourself.

The book will be available from July 16, 2021. Readers can find more information on the website here.

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