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From The CriticsReviewer: Patricia Wong, MD (Stanford University Medical Center)
Description: It is interesting to see what our European dermatology colleagues are doing. In this handbook, skin disorders are organized alphabetically. There are brief discussions on definition and epidemiology, etiology and pathophysiology, clinical characteristics and course, and differential diagnosis. The therapeutics section discusses time-honored treatments and experimental treatments. There are lots of tables and diagrams for clinical therapeutic decision making and staging disease severity. Bibliographies are at the end of each section.
Purpose: The purpose of the book is to provide clinical dermatologists with a reference for looking up treatment options that they are able to read quickly in order to arrive at a treatment plan while the patient is in the office.
Audience: The audience is clinical dermatologists.
Features: Although some of the treatments (as expected) are not available in the United States, it is still valuable to know what else can be used. I am curious to have my local pharmacist compound some of these treatments and see how they work: fusidic acid for a topical antibacterial treatment; povido-iodine + salicylic acid for molluscum contagiosum. I think it is great to know about these approaches. There are several chapters in the back of the book that are excellent discussions of different classes of drugs: psychotropics, insect repellants, bleaching agents, glucocorticoids, etc. I was surprised that there was no mention of the immunomodulator drugs — entanercept, protopic ointment and Elidel cream. I attribute this to the publication deadline for the book and the new information coming out after it was published. There is the British spelling of words, which I find adds to the charm. The British spell cyclosporine, "ciclosporine."
Assessment: This book complements Dr. Mark Lebwohl's Treatment of Skin Disease: Comprehensive Therapeutic Strategies (Mosby, 2002) and both are useful for practicing dermatologists to best serve their patients' needs.