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From The CriticsReviewer: David J. Dries, MD (University of Minnesota Medical School)
Description: This handbook of critical care originating in the United Kingdom is now adapted for use in the United States.
Purpose: It is intended as a quick reference for clinicians to access key information for common critical care problems.
Audience: Students and junior residents are an appropriate audience for this work, which originates from University College in London and the University of Pittsburgh.
Features: Initial chapters cover cardiopulmonary resuscitation and monitoring techniques. Drugs for common organ system problems are then described followed by a review of common disorders affecting major organ systems. Final chapters describe environmental problems including trauma and burns, pain management principles, obstetrics, death and dying, and ICU leadership. Chapters are divided into two-page segments for each subtopic and the information is presented in an outline format. Tables are frequently used, but there are no illustrations or line drawings. At the conclusion of some presentations, recent key papers from primary literature dating to within three years of publication are presented. Abundant cross-referencing with other chapters is provided so that readers have ready access to complementary information.
Assessment: This handbook has been effectively adapted for an American audience. Cross-referencing in each presentation allows broad access to content and addition of citations for key papers is important. Many of the two-page presentation segments in chapters have a significant amount of blank space. Management of additional information for this space is an important opportunity for improvement.