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From The CriticsReviewer: Sandra S. Green, MD (Medical College of Wisconsin)
Description: This fifth edition textbook replaces the 1994 edition, and it covers all major subspecialty areas of internal medicine, including neurology and dermatology. In addition, there are chapters on topics that transcend subspecialties, including principles of diagnostic testing, bioethics, cost effectiveness, and clinical practice guidelines.
Purpose: The stated purpose is to provide a comprehensive textbook that is readable and rapidly accessible in daily practice, and these objectives are nicely met.
Audience: It is targeted toward students, housestaff, and practicing physicians.
Features: As in previous editions, the contributors make generous use of tables and algorithms which add immensely to the text. Many chapters include a highlighted box on "When to Refer." A section on special topics covers areas often neglected in internal medicine texts, including preoperative evaluations, medical disorders during pregnancy, ENT disorders, and geriatrics. The division of chapters into subspecialty areas and further subdivisions within each section sometimes create artificial barriers and make information harder to locate within the table of contents. For example, a search through the section on pulmonary and critical care reveals nothing on reactive airways disease, which is included in the clinical immunology, rheumatology, and dermatology section. Similarly, evaluation of joint complaints is found under clinical immunology rather than joint diseases.
Assessment: This text is easy to use for quick reference on clinical problems and the main subject areas are well written. However, some areas are not well covered. For example, there is a chapter on women's health, which includes a brief discussion of menopause and contraception, but menstrual disorders such as dysmenorrhea, dysfunctional uterine bleeding, and PMS are not covered. HIV/AIDS-related topics and nutrition-related topics are covered rather briefly compared to other leading medicine textbooks. However, for the great majority of topics, this is a useful addition in the clinical setting and it is a worthwhile update for any reference library.