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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Milana Dusanko Panjkovic, MD (Institute for Pulmonary Diseases of Vojvodina)
Description: This is a collection of questions dealing with the most important issues of general and systemic pathology. There are over 1,100 clinical vignette-style questions, many of which are illustrated with color photographs and all of which are annotated with brief explanations.
Purpose: The purpose is to provide medical students with a review of pathology through questions and answers. By discussing the clinical aspects of various diseases and correlating the clinical and pathological findings, pathophysiology, and histopathology, this book promotes understanding of underlying concepts and mechanisms and is an ideal way to master pathology. Obviously, the aim of the authors is to improve students' problem-solving skills and discourage them from memorizing trivia.
Audience: The book was written primarily for second year medical students, but it can be used by students of allied health, residents in pathology, and clinical residents on rotation in pathology. It is ideally suited for an end-of-the-year review and could thus be used as a preparation for final comprehensive examinations in pathology or for the USMLE 1. Students preparing for USMLE 2 could profit from using it as a review as well, along the lines of the old adage that "USMLE 1 is the best preparation for USMLE 2." The authors are experienced medical educators and writers and their book reflects their understanding of student level pathology and educational principles as applied to testing.
Features: The 30 chapters cover all segments of general and systemic pathology. Three appendixes contain important facts that are useful for the USMLE 1 and 2 (e.g., clinical laboratory data) and an index completes the book. Many questions pertain to figures, which are all in color. All questions include prototypical clinical vignettes, which often use buzz-words and terms that are often repeated by medical educators. The photographs, all in color, are well chosen and representative, more than adequately illustrating the salient macroscopic and microscopic features of each disease under discussion. Clinical-pathological correlations illustrated here are the backbone of the current USMLE examinations and, accordingly, this book is a good preparation for the national examinations.
Assessment: This question and answer book is an excellent contribution to the genre that could be best classified as secondary textbooks, study guides, or review books. It compares most favorably with the leading book of this type — Robbins and Cotran Review of Pathology, 2nd edition, by Klatt and Kumar (Elsevier, 2005). Although this review is formally linked to Rubin's Pathology: Clinicopathologic Foundations of Medicine, 5th edition (Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, 2008), it can be used independently of that textbook. It is structured so that it can be used in a classical pathology course as well as in an integrated organ-based curriculum. I recommend it highly and I am sure that many sophomore students will buy it to get another point of view from the one championed by Klatt and Kumar. Perusing the book for just a few minutes will convince students that it contains just what they need and in the appropriate amount — not too much and not too little. I would agree with them, and would add that even the professors could learn from this book. It deserves to be in every pathology departmental library and on the shelf of current study material of every medical school library.