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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Maribeth Moran, RN, MSN, CPN, CNE (University of Oklahoma College of Nursing)
Description: More than 180 different diagnostic tests are discussed with an emphasis on patient education in this book.
Purpose: The purpose is to provide information about common medical tests in a concise, uncomplicated manner. It is intended to be an easy-to-understand reference with answers to questions that patients commonly ask nurses. For the most part, the book meets these objectives.
Audience: The intended audience appears to be practicing nurses, although that is not entirely clear in the introduction. This book seems to be written for nursing students and perhaps for some practicing nurses, although the information is quite basic.
Features: A unique feature of this book is the layout. Each of the 28 chapters is formatted identically, which makes finding information easy. Patient education sections for each test are highlights. Every chapter includes a post-test of 10 very basic multiple-choice questions, and the book has a final exam at the end. Glaring shortcomings of the book include the complete lack of references and illustrations.
Assessment: There are many diagnostic test reference books for nurses on the market. Nursing: Deciphering Diagnostic Tests (Lippincott, Williams, & Wilkins, 2008) and Mosby's Manual of Diagnostic and Laboratory Tests, 4th edition, Pagana and Pagana (Elsevier, 2009), for example, seem to provide much more in-depth, referenced information in a straightforward manner. While this book is a nice attempt at "demystifying" and clarifying complex information about diagnostic tests, it falls short of being a really helpful reference for nurses.