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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: John R. McGuire, MD (Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago)
Description: This book is on how neuroimaging may be used to better understand the neurorehabilitation process and possibly enhance outcomes after brain injury. It is based on a workshop at Bowman Gray School of Medicine in 1994, and it includes reviews by experts in stroke research, neurorehabilitation, and neuroimaging.
Purpose: The purpose is to inform neurorehabilitation researchers about the capabilities of functional neuroimaging to help neuroimaging researchers understand the problems of rehabilitation and to foster interdisciplinary research. These are extremely important objectives because rehabilitation treatment tends to be nonspecific, and a better understanding of brain injury through noninvasive techniques would enhance the rehabilitation approach.
Audience: This book is intended for clinicians and researchers in the area of rehabilitation, in particular, brain injury, and also neuroradiologists. The authors of the individual chapters are qualified and have presented their chapters in a concise and readable manner. They ask many important questions and help set the stage for further collaboration and research in the areas of neurorehabilitation and imaging.
Features: The written text and tables in this book are very good and concisely review a wide range of topics related to key issues in neuroimaging, pathophysiology of brain injury, and neurorehabilitation. Unfortunately, the number and quality of the images presented are limited. Only four chapters actually included black-and-white neuro-images, many of which would have been better represented in color. Also, reference lists were not included in a few of the chapters. Dr. Fenney's chapter on the pattern of brain damage in traumatic brain injury model is an excellent review on the pathophysiologic mechanisms underlying brain injury and includes several frozen section slides to help illustrate the mechanisms of injury. A better understanding of these mechanisms will help direct neuroimaging efforts and also guide pharmacologic treatment.
Assessment: This is an extremely important book on how neuroimaging may be used to better understand the process of neurorehabilitation and enhance outcomes after brain injury. It includes concise and very readable chapters that review previously published material from experts in neurorehabilitation and neuroimaging. The text and tables in this book are very good. Unfortunately, the images are limited both in number and quality. This undoubtedly helped keep the cost and size of the book down, which will make it available to more readers because more extensive books on neuroimaging with higher quality of images will be more expensive. Overall, the objectives and the quality of the text make up for the limited number of images and make this a very good introductory book on the concept of integrating neuroimaging with neurorehabilitation.