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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Jennifer Brueckner, PhD (University of Kentucky College of Medicine)
Description: This is a comprehensive anatomy book for undergraduate instruction. It includes a lexicon of anatomical term derivatives as well as a unique "brushing up" feature introducing each chapter, suggesting appropriate points for review from previous chapters.
Purpose: The purpose is to provide an anatomical reference that is accurate and well illustrated with an enjoyable reading style. This book meets the objectives and provides a contemporary approach to teaching and learning basic anatomy.
Audience: It is intended for freshman or sophomore undergraduates taking a one semester anatomy course. The text is written at the appropriate level for this audience, providing additional detail in tables and figures. The author has written another anatomy and physiology textbook, Anatomy and Physiology: The Unity of Form and Function, now in its fourth edition (McGraw-Hill, 2007).
Features: The book begins with the organization of the body, first introducing the various disciplines included under the umbrella of the anatomical sciences. An overview of the various body regions and systems follows. A brief review of cell biology, histology and embryology conclude the first module. Part two addresses the musculoskeletal system, including the histology of the skin and bone, followed by the gross anatomy of the skeleton and associated axial and appendicular muscles. Part three focuses on the regulatory aspects of the nervous and endocrine systems. Part four deals with systems involved in homeostasis, including the cardiovascular, lymphatic, respiratory, digestive and urinary systems. It concludes with part five, which covers the reproductive anatomy of the male and female. This book has several innovative features that set it apart from the competition. Its back cover contains a lexicon of biomedical word elements, helping the student to understand the meaning of the Greek and Latin derivatives. The "brushing up" section precedes each chapter and provides readings from prior chapters that may help the student prepare to learn the material at hand. Placing the basics of embryology immediately following the cell biology chapter is an effective learning sequence. Tables and labeled art provide more detail than is found in the text and thus add some flexibility in the amount of information to be addressed by an instructor. The reviews following each chapter provide a nice summary of the material covered in outline form. The addition of some cadaveric images is effective, given that many of these students may encounter a professional level gross anatomy course during their coursework.
Assessment: This is an effective reference for undergraduate anatomy courses. It would not be sufficient for a combined anatomy and physiology course as a standalone text. The book is written in an easy to read, straightforward manner, with the text well organized into small, manageable blocks of material. It is well illustrated, with spectacular artwork and photos.