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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Patricia Wong, MD (Stanford University Medical Center)
Description: This is an amazing reference on dermatologic drugs. It goes well beyond discussing side-effects, dosages, laboratory monitoring, and disease indications. It is loaded with practical tips on what to expect when beginning treatment with a particular drug, potential pitfalls, and which patients may be at higher risk for adverse reactions. Useful tables outline the differences in topical medications that could be prescribed for the same condition. For example, which topicals are manufactured with propylene glycol? This could make a difference in what you choose to treat, for example, a tinea infection. This third edition is bigger and better than its two predecessors published in 2007 and 2001.
Purpose: It is intended to be the comprehensive resource for dermatologic drugs, topical prescription and nonprescription agents (many of which are over-the-counter products such as insect repellants, shampoos), and cosmetic products.
Audience: The audience is dermatologists, dermatology residents, and primary care internists who want to be knowledgeable about treating skin conditions.
Features: All the information is incredibly current. The chapters are organized by similar mechanisms of action: antibacterial, cytotoxic, phototherapy, TNF inhibitors, IVIG, etc. Each chapter starts out with important questions that highlight the main concepts. As a topic is discussed, the number of the question is highlighted at the beginning of the paragraph. There are important discussions of drug syndromes and current recommendations for treatment. Clear monitoring guidelines are outlined. Nice, spacious tables diagram mechanism of action of various drugs. Drugs that are used in Europe but not the U.S. are covered, which is helpful when seeing a patient who is from another country, or a U.S. patient who happened to be treated by a physician outside the U.S. Basic principles of drug treatment are presented. Drugs that were removed from the market after being approved are discussed. The practical information on which drugs can be most helpful for treating a particular disease, and the nuances in dosing and avoiding/minimizing certain complications are invaluable. The book comes with a code to access an online version.
Assessment: Clinicians will love this book. You cannot legitimately consider yourself a real dermatologist if you do not have this reference in your armamentarium. I recommend that all dermatologists buy two copies — one for the office and one for home. This is a superb book and I am delighted to own it!