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From The CriticsReviewer: William Miles, MD (Rush University Medical Center)
Description: This small paperback review book consists of approximately 100 clinical vignettes about psychiatry and behavioral science. It is specifically designed for medical students studying for Step 1 of the United States Medical Licensing Exam (USMLE). The previous edition was published in 1998.
Purpose: The book's purposes are several: to provide a review of psychiatry and behavioral science, to address the fact of ever-increasing clinical vignette type questions found on the USMLE, and to provide as many testable facts as possible.
Audience: The book is specifically written for medical students studying for Step 1 of the USMLE. However, as is true of any review book, anyone who wishes to brush up on the designated topic may find it useful.
Features: This book is composed entirely of short (one paragraph) clinical vignettes. Important information such as physical exam, pertinent laboratory values, or imaging studies is provided. A brief discussion follows, explaining the diagnosis and treatment. Practically every significant psychiatric syndrome is represented via a clinical vignette. Important facts are presented in bold-faced type, helping the student to remember testable facts. A glossary of abbreviations is provided at the front of the book. There are no illustrations or tables. The authors provide no references, nor is there an index.
Assessment: This is a quick, uncomplicated read and students should find it an invaluable review source. Clinical vignettes are one of the best ways to retain information in medicine, and this book provides students with good, basic knowledge. As psychiatry is a rapidly changing field, this new edition is certainly welcome.