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Doody ReviewsReviewer: Korwyn Williams, MD, PhD (Phoenix Children's Hospital)
Description: Written by international experts, this book surveys the breadth and depth of information in pediatric neuroimmunology.
Purpose: It includes the expected chapters on classification of central nervous system demyelination and autoantibodies involvement, but it also looks at the less intuitive associations of genetic mutations in inflammatory disease of the nervous system and inflammation in neurodegeneration syndromes and muscle disease. This is a timely collection given this rapidly evolving field. Overall, the authors succeed in illuminating these complicated topics.
Audience: The obvious audience is neurologists, both those in training and those practicing for years. Rheumatologists also might find the neurological perspectives illuminating. The book is certainly readable and written in such a way that readers can focus quite easily on immunology, clinical presentation, or management.
Features: Traditional topics such as central nervous demyelination (ADEM, MS, clinically isolated syndromes, optic neuritis) , acute cerebellar ataxia, myasthenia gravis, opsoclonus myoclonus syndrome, and systemic lupus erythematosus are well covered. More esoteric and newer entities such as NMDA encephalitis, Aicardi-Goutieres syndrome, hemophagocytic lymphohistiocytosis, macrophage activation syndrome, neurodevelopmental disorders associated with cerebral folate deficiency, and the immune system in genetic muscular dystrophies are also covered well in informative chapters. The authors are generous with illustrations and neuroimaging. The color plate section following the index is a particularly helpful addition. The well-edited chapters include a mix of basic immunology and clinical diseases. The book lends itself easily to a quick review or more leisurely, in-depth reading.
Assessment: Many of the topics in this book will be familiar to pediatric neurologists. The emphasis on the detailed immunological basis of the diseases is edifying. However, the role of the immune system in the pathophysiology of a disease like Charcot-Marie-Tooth syndrome is a surprise. Much of the information certainly can be found in scientific journals, but this is a worthy and helpful compendium.