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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Valerie L. Ng, PhD MD(Alameda County Medical Center/Highland Hospital)
Description: This full-sized paperback book is exactly what it says it is — an illustrated question-and-answer review of pathology.
Purpose: The purpose is to provide a comprehensive review of basic pathology concepts and application to disease in clinical vignette-type questions to assist with USMLE preparation and/or review of pathology.
Audience: It is intended for medical students within their first two years of medical school or allied health students studying pathology. The authors are well-respected and very credible authorities in pathology.
Features: Now, this is a really cool book. It has 30 chapters spanning all of pathology, from basic cellular processes (e.g., injury, inflammation, repair/regeneration/fibrosis, immunopathology, neoplasia, etc.) to organ based disease processes. I really, really liked the clinical vignette question format. While this format mimics the USMLE test format, more importantly, it reflects everyday clinical practice and deliberations. Pictures abound — all exemplary — of pathognomonic findings. From a visual perspective alone, a simple flipping of pages reinforces the instant pattern recognition intrinsic to anatomical pathology practice. Questions regarding basic pathophysiology are thought-provoking and informative. There is an online tie-in, allowing the test taker two different formats — one mirroring the actual test taking process (test format), and the other giving instant feedback (quiz format). I like this book because it provides a pretty comprehensive review of pathology in one relatively lightweight package. As a paperback, however, it won't stand up to extended wear and tear — something it will get because of its sheer usefulness. One curious formatting issue: on p. 211, some of the infectious organisms are in bold italicized font, whereas others are in the usual italicized font. The bolding could suggest to users a preferred answer, when in fact the bolded options are not always the correct answers.
Assessment: This is the book to get if you want a quick, thorough, and engaging review of pathology.