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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Peter Pal Molnar , MD. PhD, DSc (University of Debrecen)
Description: This second edition of a concise review of basic neuropathological information, authored by 21 eminent neuropathologists, has been completely revised, with some old chapters replaced and new ones added.
Purpose: The book serves as a user-friendly guide to help deal with everyday practical problems related to the various diseases of the nervous system and muscle. Those who seek more detailed information in any particular area are helped by the up-to-date references. The book does fulfill this "daily-practice-oriented" purpose adequately in an esthetically pleasing presentation.
Audience: The editors have succeeded in providing a state-of-the-art, concise overview of recent advances in neuropathology. This book is a major achievement with rich and easy to use visual and textural material for all those who wish to further their knowledge of CNS and PNS pathology. Thus, it can strongly be recommended for residents, general pathologists, and neuropathologists as well as oncologists and clinicians, including neuroradiologists, neurosurgeons and neurologists. The authors are credible authorities.
Features: The general approach to dissect various CNS and PNS pathologies is appealing for those who must deal with neuropathology as part of their practice of general surgical pathology and interpreting autopsy material. For more detailed information one can turn to the bibliography. Several chapters have paragraphs dedicated to technical problems and there is a separate chapter that deals with the laboratory techniques of brain tumor analysis. There is an ample supply of gross, microscopic, and EM illustrations, enriched by inclusion of various types of neuroimaging information. There is a separate chapter on neuroimaging, although this is one of the less satisfactory parts of the book (it is too short, includes only a few figures, there are no data on PET, MRI-angiography, FLAIR-imaging, or SPECT). The quality of the photographic material is excellent, although the black-and-white immunohistochemical illustrations are often hard to interpret. It would have been helpful to indicate the magnification of the microphotographs. The color figures are lumped together and it is somewhat cumbersome to go back and forth between the text and the relevant figures. It is not clear why the description of ischemic lesions is separated from the overview of cerebrovascular diseases (it inevitably results in overlap between the two chapters). There are some unbalanced disparities among the chapters (variable number of figures and relatively significant differences in length), but the most pertinent information is included. Particularly detailed are the chapters on trauma and neoplastic lesions, which are very useful. The text reads well, which points to the considerable amount of work and special attention paid by the editors, since this is a multiauthored book. A number of flow charts could have been included. Differential diagnostic points are emphasized and are very helpful. Unfortunately, stereotactic, needle-biopsy material is scarce just like cytological preparations and frozen section material (the latter is practically missing).
Assessment: The scope of neuropathology continues to expand, as indicated by the recent publication of several multivolume, specialty books plus a number of books that cover particular subspecialties (e.g., CNS and PNS neoplasia, neuromuscular diseases, etc.). It is a field that rapidly branches out and for anyone interested in various areas of neurosciencs, the ever growing, exponentially increasing amount of new information that needs to be assimilated and mastered is a real challenge, even at times daunting. The editors have succeeded in providing a state-of-the-art, concise overview of recent advances in neuropathology in a user-friendly, easy-to-use reference book. The second edition is rightfully justified.