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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Carlos E Figueroa Castro, MD (Medical College of Wisconsin)
Description: This multiauthored book encompasses almost all aspects of the clinical management of infections in humans. As described by the editor, it lies somewhere between an encyclopedic textbook and a pocket-sized manual. Although this refers to the size of the book, it is a good description for this work overall.
Purpose: The main purpose is to "address the needs of both general internists and infectious diseases specialists." As a busy infectious diseases provider, I have the book in my desk during my outpatient clinic, and I have found it very useful in my daily practice, leaving Mandell (Mandell, Douglas, and Bennett's Principles and Practice of Infectious Diseases, 6th edition (Elsevier, 2005)) and other sources for the most obscure details.
Audience: The authors assume readers are familiar with the subject. The target audience includes general internists and clinical infectious disease specialists, but the book might find a place on the bookshelf of pulmonologists, critical care medicine providers, and even public health professionals. This might become a favorite among infectious disease fellows. Most of the authors are known experts and most are affiliated with major universities in the United States.
Features: The book is divided into three basic sections: clinical syndromes, special host infections, and detailed descriptions of pathogens, a very common division in infectious diseases books. This is not an all-inclusive textbook — do not expect a "bug parade" or the latest in intracellular signaling. With its color images and great quality, this book will appeal to any reader. The tables and algorithms are clear and helpful and suggested readings end each chapter.
Assessment: This is a welcome addition to the infectious diseases books designed for busy clinicians. It has more detail than the ACP book (Infectious Diseases, 2nd edition, Tan et al. (American College of Physicians, 2008)) and similar texts. I will be waiting for future editions. A note to fellowship program directors: Don't be surprised if this book is used as preparation for the board exam during training.