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From The CriticsReviewer: William Miles, MD (Rush University Medical Center)
Description: This is a review of psychiatry and related behavioral sciences for preclinical medical students.
Purpose: The purpose is to offer a user-friendly, goal-directed review of the behavioral sciences for first and second year medical students, and in particular to help them to prepare for USMLE Step 1. These are certainly worthy objectives, and the authors meet them.
Audience: It is specifically written for preclinical medical students.
Features: The book is divided into three sections of five chapters each. The first section reviews the human life cycle from childhood to old age; section 2 discusses the numerous challenges human beings face, such as coping with stress, interpersonal violence, substance abuse, etc; and section 3 deals with the role a physician plays in treating patients from a behavioral medicine standpoint. This section offers a concise yet thorough review of the major psychiatric disorders. Each chapter has a "menu" of objectives and a series of "starter questions" leading into the chapter. A series of board-style questions, complete with answers, ends each chapter. Numerous gray boxed tables of important terms are scattered throughout each chapter, as well as some black-and-white illustrations and other tables. Suggested readings end each chapter. Curiously, there is no index.
Assessment: This is a rather interesting review book, and is somewhat different (in a positive way) than others of its kind. It is a nice blend of behavioral science (psychology) and behavioral medicine (psychiatry). It contains a wealth of information, and medical students studying for USMLE Step 1 will find it very useful. It is quite user-friendly, marred only by its lack of an index.