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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Dan Capampangan, MD (Mayo Clinic Arizona)
Description: This is an excellent, easy to read, concise review of common presenting neurological symptoms that are often encountered in the emergency department or hospital. The practical nature of this book is evident as the chapters are presented according to patient symptomatology instead of neurological entities. This is an update of the second edition of 2003.
Purpose: The purpose appears to be to review and manage common presenting neurological symptoms. Readers will find the management algorithms useful in clinical practice.
Audience: According to the authors, this book would appeal to "acute care providers," and they are probably referring to emergency department physicians, residents, and midlevels. However, the book is also a high-quality review for neuro-hospitalists and neurologists. Additionally, neurology and internal medicine residents and medical students who work in an emergency department/hospital setting will find it very helpful in assessing and managing patients with neurological conditions. Finally, the book also would be welcomed by general internal medicine hospitalists. The authors include three emergency physicians, a neurologist, and a neuroradiologist. Although the first author is a clinical professor of emergency medicine, he has also completed a neurology residency.
Features: The book covers common presenting neurological symptoms. The section on psychogenic neurologic syndromes is valuable, using pictures to demonstrate physical examination maneuvers that can be performed on a patient to evaluate for psychogenic weakness. The section on emergent neuroimaging is also excellent. The tables throughout the book are particularly helpful in providing high-yield information on certain topics. Although there are brief paragraphs on children with neurological conditions, a separate chapter on pediatric neurology or children presenting with neurological symptoms would have strengthened this book.
Assessment: This is an excellent review of common neurological symptoms that are often encountered in the emergency department or hospital. Although it is geared towards emergency department physicians, other specialists will find this book useful in assessing and managing neurological emergencies. Another book to consider is Emergency Neurology: Principles and Practice, Shah and Kelly (Cambridge University Press, 1999), as each chapter has a section of "pearls & pitfalls" that highlights major points. Nevertheless, the easy to read nature of this book and the division of the chapters into presenting symptoms make Neurologic Emergencies a valuable resource.