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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Sandra E. Inouye, PhD (Midwestern University)
Description: In a departure from traditional anatomy books, this book presents clinical anatomy using a case study approach. Responding to the changes in medical licensing examinations, it attempts to help prepare medical students for a more critical thinking approach to anatomy rather than presenting numerous facts and details for memorization.
Purpose: Anatomy has traditionally been taught in medical schools largely based on memorization. However, medical education curricula have been trending towards more incorporation of clinical medicine into the first two years of medical school. At the same time, the licensing examinations are becoming more clinically based, problem-solving exercises rather than mere recognition of facts. This book attempts to address these changes in education and licensing examinations by presenting anatomy in a clinical case study format.
Audience: The level of detail and cases that it covers makes it an appropriate study aid for first-year medical students.
Features: The book is regionally organized, with each chapter uniquely composed of a series of clinical topic subsections. All subsections start with a case presentation to frame the importance of the clinical topic. Each subsection covers some basic anatomy, contains a clinical reasoning section, and a diagnosis section. There are numerous tables, medical images, and schematic diagrams throughout each chapter. Clinical notes appear throughout each subsection and the review questions at the end of each chapter are written in a format similar to licensing examinations. The organization of basic anatomy around clinical topics feels a bit disorienting at times. When general anatomy is introduced and spread out over many clinical topics, it may lead to a feeling that the overall picture of the area is somewhat lost. On the other hand, learning how to think about anatomy in the context of relevant clinical topics is valuable and the ultimate goal of learning anatomy.
Assessment: This is a good addition to the anatomy books for medical students. The case study approach makes it more unique, but since it is organized around a series of cases and the anatomy is fairly basic, it feels more like an adjunct book to be used along with more detailed anatomy books such as Clinically Oriented Anatomy, 7th edition, Moore et al. (Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, 2014). It is a very good book to help teach medical students clinical reasoning skills, but the lack of more detailed anatomical descriptions and figures limits its use to first-year medical students or undergraduate students in other healthcare professions.