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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Heather Huang, MD (University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health)
Description: This new edition of a book designed to offer "a systematic approach to the differential diagnosis of symptoms and signs commonly seen by primary care physicians," updates information pertaining to diagnosis and testing. The previous edition was published in 2007.
Purpose: Generating a comprehensive differential diagnosis is the foundation of every physician's clinical decision-making skills. This book not only aids the clinician in generating a differential, it also relates it back to fundamental concepts such as anatomy and physiology.
Audience: Medical students, residents, and any clinicians who are involved in the diagnostic element of patient care are the intended audience.
Features: The book is organized into three sections covering history, physical examination, and special examination techniques; differential diagnosis of symptoms and signs; and diseases that are symptoms of other diseases. Each section is organized alphabetically for quick reference. The differential diagnosis is reviewed in a systematic way that follows basic principles, such as anatomy and physiology. In doing so, the book helps readers understand how the differential is generated. Detailed anatomic drawings accompany each differential list and provide valuable visual aids. Concise tables and figures summarize key points and provide an additional source of information. The book also comes with online access to a website that contains the fully searchable text and additional information.
Assessment: This is a wonderful book that provides a systematic approach and comprehensive listing of differential diagnoses for a number of symptoms and signs commonly seen by primary care physicians. It draws upon fundamental principles of anatomy and physiology to generate differentials. It is easy to search as it is organized alphabetically by symptoms, disease, etc. Suggestions for initial work-up are listed in an appendix at the end of the book. Anatomic drawings of pathology and concise tables accompany the text and offer a valuable supplement to the reading.