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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Robert E. Rakel, MD (Baylor College of Medicine)
Description: This hardcover book on primary care cardiology uses four-color accentuation of titles, algorithms, and figures.
Purpose: It is intended to provide primary care physicians with an authoritative yet user friendly text that goes beyond that available in manuals but is not as extensive as traditional cardiology textbooks.
Audience: Primary care physicians and other noncardiologists are the audience, but the authors say "for primary care physicians, internists, and family physicians" as though there is a difference between primary care physicians and the other two. The authors and the contributors are all national authorities.
Features: This book focuses on the fundamental principles that underlie evidence-based medicine and emphasizes the evaluation and management of cardiovascular problems frequently encountered in primary care. Chapters 7-16 address common symptoms, signs, and situations such as edema, palpitations, and dyspnea, while chapters 17-31 deal with cardiovascular disorders such as heart failure and arrhythmias. A unique feature is the extensive use of color to highlight major and minor headings as well as the many illustrations. Flow diagrams consistently show diagnostic features in blue and therapeutic recommendations in green. There are also many tables, ECG tracings, echocardiograms, and radiographs. Colored drawings are used effectively, including one that shows the mechanism of unstable angina.
Assessment: This is a beautiful book presented by leading authorities who provide a useful resource for primary care physicians. It gives depth without excessive detail. The information remains focused and practical and the colorful presentation makes it both attractive and easy to access the information.