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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Jay P. Goldsmith, MD (Tulane University School of Medicine)
Description: This softcover book is a synthesis of material covered in the neonatology specialty boards and an aid to studying for these exams. The book serves as a framework for studying, but is not comprehensive and is not intended for direct patient care. It is written by two junior instructors who have recently completed their boards and have compiled their notes and review study guides into an excellent study manual.
Purpose: The purpose is to act as a study guide for preparing to take the neonatology board exams. It may also be used to provide a framework of basic material in neonatology and also to some extent in maternal fetal medicine. As a study guide, the book certainly achieves its objectives, but the reader is advised to supplement each subject area with detailed readings in standard textbooks.
Audience: The book is intended for fellows in neonatology who are preparing to take their neonatal/perinatal board exams. However, the book is also a good basic reference to pediatric residents, neonatal nurses and nurse practitioners. The authors, although somewhat junior in their neonatal experience, have the advantage of having recently studied and taken the board exams and thus have focused the text on the questions and areas that the exams emphasize.
Features: The chapters are organized by system and the material covered is similar in content to that suggested by the examiners of the American Board of Pediatrics. The initial chapter on maternal/fetal medicine briefly covers the information neonatologists should know regarding the care of high risk mothers before delivery. The book is relatively weak in the areas of radiology, genetics, and dermatology mainly because of lack of radiographs and pictures. The pharmacology section is also relatively brief and could benefit from problems and examples of drug clearance, pharmacokinetics and drug monitoring.
Assessment: The book is well written and well researched. It will serve as an essential resource for neonatal fellows preparing for their exams and may find additional use among pediatric residents and NICU nursing personnel. The book is an excellent synthesis of a large amount of information written in a succinct style. There are no comparable books with similar objectives. The popular paperback reviews of neonatology, Merenstein and Gardner's Handbook of Neonatal Intensive Care, 5th Edition (Mosby , 2002), and Cloherty and Stark's Manual of Neonatal Care, 4th Edition (Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, 1998), are more directed at bedside patient care and have much less physiology and biochemistry then this book, which emphasizes the biological, physiologic, and pharmacologic principles which will be tested in an exam.