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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Carole A. Kenner, PhD, RN, FAAN (Council of International Neonatal Nurses)
Description: This book is designed as a quick reference for the most common signs and symptoms a nurse will encounter in practice. Its format is divided into the areas of overview, assessment, medical causes, and nursing considerations.
Purpose: The purpose is to provide a reference for nurses and other health professionals who need quick access to client signs and symptoms. This worthy purpose is met.
Audience: The audience is nursing students, practicing nurses at all levels, and other health professionals who encounter a need to recognize symptomatic cues of disease. The authors/contributors are credible.
Features: The content is presented in an alphabetized fashion according to signs and symptomatology. Using this format allows the reader easy, quick access to information. Key features such as assessment tips or emergency considerations are presented in color boxes or denoted with color stars making them easy to find. A flowchart at the end of the book guides one through the analysis of a symptom. This is an excellent teaching tool and also reinforces how to use the book. There is little to offer the pediatric or critical care nurse as there are only some special considerations listed, but these specialties are not the true focus of the book.
Assessment: This is definitely a quick reference, covering only about 200 entities. Other books on the market such as Springhouse's Professional Guide to Signs & Symptoms, 4th edition (Springhouse, 2004), are generally much more detailed. The Springhouse book includes algorithms and teaching aids that add value for the clinician.