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From The CriticsReviewer: Laurel Preheim, MD (Creighton University)
Description: The author briefly notes important milestones in the history of infectious diseases dating from 1500 BC to 2000 AD. The book has a mere 125 pages (with generous margins) and contains 72 illustrations or photographs.
Purpose: The book strives to record in chronological order some of the key milestones in the development of understanding of infectious diseases that have taken place over the last millennium. The author correctly observes "The milestones listed here are indeed important ones but are by no means comprehensive."
Audience: The audience for this book would most likely consist of those individuals with little or no medical background who might be interested in a superficial chronologic history of infectious diseases.
Features: The book offers a broad but shallow approach to the history of infectious diseases. The author describes in one or two brief sentences a single milestone for each important year between 1500 BC and 2000 AD. There are numerous small illustrations and photographs of selected scientists who advanced the field. The book lacks both a table of contents and an index. There are no references, although the author acknowledges the National Library of Medicine, the World Health Organization, and the Nobel Foundation. Of note, the book credits several specific pharmaceutical firms for their development of anti-infectives. Other antimicrobials of equal or greater importance, however, go unmentioned.
Assessment: This book has little to offer anyone who has a serious interest in the history of infectious diseases.