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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Larry R. Cochard, PhD (Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine)
Description: This third edition of an atlas of drawings and photos of cadaver cross sections has been revised and expanded to include CT and MR images from all regions of the body.
Purpose: The primary focus is the study of cross-sectional anatomy to elucidate anatomical relationships observed at dissection and to help interpret radiological images.
Audience: Although medical students could use the book, the degree of detail is more appropriate for anatomists, radiology residents and specialists, and other clinicians.
Features: The book has 17 regional chapters that feature detailed line drawings made of cadaver cross-sections. The illustrations indicate histological characteristics of the tissues and organs and depict some of the three-dimensional characteristics of the section. For the thorax, abdomen, and pelvis, one figure and one plate are on each page—a drawing at the top half and a photo from the corresponding cadaver section or a CT scan on the lower half. The cadaver photos are on the right-hand page, where the view is from above, and the CT images are on the left-hand page, showing bottom views following radiological convention. For the rest of the body, all drawings are accompanied by MRIs with no cadaver photos. Images of abdominal variations and the spine stand alone without drawings. Improved images of the head are shown in coronal and sagittal sections, plus sections presented from below in two axial planes. New chapters cover the shoulder, knee, and spine, with each shown in more than one plane. Every page has a small anatomical figure indicating the level of the section.
Assessment: There are some minor drawbacks in this otherwise improved and useful atlas. The selective use of top views, cross-sectional cadaver photos, and even drawings results in a format inconsistency that is at first disconcerting when moving from one part of the body to another. On the other hand, the more complete coverage of CT and MR imaging makes the book much more useful and relevant. The excellent drawings, though, remain the strength of the book. Although there are no concepts, notes, patient problems, or text other than labels, the figures help one visualize cross-sectional relationships better than do other books of its type.