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From The CriticsReviewer: Arshdeep S. Jawandha, MBBS (Rush University Medical Center)
Description: As the name implies, this book contains clinically usable information pertaining to child and adolescent psychopharmacology. The book is organized in chapters by DSM-IV diagnostic categories, providing an easy clinical frame of reference and tool for memory retention.
Purpose: It is intended as an interpretive commentary on the available literature to make the scientific literature easily accessible.
Audience: Although the editor identifies practicing clinicians wishing to provide state-of-the art care to patients as the target audience, this also is an excellent resource for residents and fellows.
Features: A particularly useful chapter on pharmacokinetics succinctly captures the difference between adolescents and adults in an eye-catching table. Each chapter first discusses DSM-IV-TR diagnostic classification, briefly pointing out the epidemiology, debates, and controversies about the topic and then plunges into the medications used for that particular diagnostic category. As an example, in the ADHD chapter, the authors provide information about individual stimulant medications and each medication is further organized under subheadings of kinetics, dynamics, mode of action, dosage, administration, efficacy in clinical trials, adverse effects and interactions. A wide range of topics is covered under main headings, for example, treatment of depression covers interventions in the seasonal pattern to the treatment of refractory depression. The treatment recommendations include specific suggestions about topics where data is not as rich, such as oppositional defiant disorder. The strength of this book is the addition of an easy to read and easy to retain clinical pearls section at the end of each chapter that contains a summary of information of highest clinical value. Even though the references are provided within the chapters, the comprehensive reference list at the end of each chapter is a good aid for those who want to delve deeper into particular topics. The index is well developed and easily to use. Not covered is the topic of substance abuse and, even though drug interactions are covered under individual drugs, inclusion of a table on drug interactions would have provided another good reference tool.
Assessment: This is a strong standalone textbook for child psychiatry fellows. It fills a much needed gap in the literature for a comprehensive yet manageable pocket-sized information source on this topic. It contains empirically based and timely information that is scientifically sound. The contributors are from reputable academic institutions and have done respected work in their areas of interest.