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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Joseph Harari, MS, DVM, DACVS (University of Illinois College of Veterinary Medicine)
Description: This is the most recent volume in a series of texts dedicated to providing clinical information, across many fields, to the practicing veterinarian and veterinary student. There are 310 chapters written by nearly 400 contributors and divided by 20 consulting editors into 14 sections. Nearly 1300 pages are composed of text, tables, graphs, black-and-white photographs, line drawings, and comprehensive appendixes. To avoid duplication, relevant and current material from the previous (1995) edition is listed in the beginning of each section.
Purpose: The purpose is to provide the reader with salient features of a clinical disorder, especially the rationale for treatments. Additionally, special topics (nutrition, antimicrobial therapy, critical care, toxicology) are reviewed to provide general or broad-based knowledge. From the practitioner and educator standpointa, these are indeed worthy objectives that have been met.
Audience: The target audience is the small animal practitioner and veterinary student, including those who work with exotic/avian species. The editor is a well-known and respected internist/cardiologist who has assembled a broad group of academic, private practice, and industrial veterinary contributors.
Features: The book is divided into 14 sections, beginning with broad topics (e.g., toxicology, special care, infectious diseases), followed by sections devoted to an organ-system approach (e.g., gastrointestinal, dermatologic, musculoskeletal, genitourinary, etc.). In a final section diseases of birds/exotic pets are discussed. Appendixes on nutrition, immunization, and drug therapy are extensive and topics from the previous edition are cross-referenced in the index. Each chapter contains suggested readings along with a useful short description of each reference. Specific references to support textual comments are inconsistent; the reader needs to trust the contributors(s). A unique feature is description of evidence-based medicine in the first chapter. Unfortunately, many non-statistically oriented readers, especially practitioners, may find the material difficult to follow.
Assessment: This is an excellent combination of surgical and medical therapies for companion animals. The traditions and standards of previous editions are followed and continued. Comparable texts include Morgan's Handbook of Small Animal Practice, 3rd Edition (W.B. Saunders, 1997) and Birchard's Saunders Manual of Small Animal Practice (W.B. Saunders, 1994).