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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Charles E. Edmiston, Jr., PhD (Medical College of Wisconsin)
Description: This is a concise, descriptive review of medical microbiology for medical students taking the USMLE.
Purpose: This is the fifth edition of a book that has long been a standard review text in American medical schools. As in previous editions, the materials are presented with a strong emphasis on understanding key clinical concepts in infection.
Audience: Although this text primarily focuses upon reviewing concepts in medical microbiology that are of interest to students and medical practitioners, it is also a valuable resource for all allied health professionals. The clinical emphasis is valuable to those interested in understanding microbial pathogenesis and host-parasite interactions. This text should not be viewed as a primary resource, but rather supplemental to course lectures and primary textbooks.
Features: The material is organized into seven major content areas covering, for example, basic microbiology, clinical bacteriology, virology, parasitology, mycology, and immunology. In addition to its strong and concise content, the text also contains several review chapters that include sample USMLE questions with answers. There are numerous tables and figures that are extremely helpful to understanding key concepts associated with microbial pathogenesis and the immune response to infection.
Assessment: This text presents a clear review of medical microbiology and immunology for medical practitioners and allied health professionals. Although there are several books of this type on the market, this review text has endured with time. The value of this book in comparison with others lies in the following: the editors and contributors place a strong emphasis on clinical application; summaries are succinct but with sufficient narrative for comprehension; key concepts are highlighted for further study; an effort is made to supplement the readings with thought-provoking questions at the end of each chapter; and numerous sample USMLE questions are included with answers to test the student's understanding of the subject matter. The editors have made several additions to this text since the last edition, reflecting our current understanding of the immune processes and virology (hepatitis and HIV). These additions are appropriate and enhance the overall value of the text as a review resource for medical professionals.