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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Thomas J. Johnson, Pharm.D., MBA, BCPS, FASHP (South Dakota State University)
Description: This update of a concise pocket reference on the fundamentals of antibiotic therapy also can be used as a review. The consistent layout of key points makes it easy to use. The previous edition was published in 2008.
Purpose: The purpose is to serve as a supplement to more extensive coursework using easy to understand and remember language. The book is a valuable resource for students and residents who need additional review and reference when working in the field of antibiotics.
Audience: Pharmacy students and residents who are learning and reaffirming their knowledge of antibiotic or antimicrobial therapy will find this book helpful. Medical students, nursing students, and other healthcare professionals also may find this book a valuable part of their "pocket library." In the past, I have recommended the first edition to students, and I will continue to do so with this second edition. The authors do a great job of using their expertise to simplify a complex area.
Features: The book includes an overview of microbiology followed by drug class descriptions of antimicrobials, antifungals, and antivirals. The best parts of the book are its basic approach, easy to read layout, and the "don't forget" section that reminds readers of key points. The artwork is well done and easy to understand and the tables, while limited, are very helpful. This book is a nice bridge between a pharmacology textbook, a microbiology textbook, and an infectious disease textbook. The only drawback is the relative lack of a discussion of the ambulatory uses of antimicrobials. The overall slant of the book is toward severe infections, yet a large part of antibiotic use is certainly in the ambulatory setting, and this information would be useful for pharmacy students.
Assessment: This second edition adds material in the area of antivirals and HIV medications and antifungals. This book really fills a niche in that it is complete, yet not overly complex, easy to read, and easy to use. It provides more explanation and serves as a nice addition to a book like The Sanford Guide to Antimicrobial Therapy, 41st edition, Gilbert et al. (Antimicrobial Therapy, Incorporated, 2011), to help students provide recommendations for therapy and simply keep everything straight.