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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Xiao Yun Wang, BS, MD (University of Kansas Medical Center)
Description: This compact, easily portable paperback covers the basics of immunology and microbiology in an outline format. Two practice examinations, each consisting of 50 USMLE type questions and explanatory discussions, complete the review book. In addition, access to online study and testing tools for USMLE Step 1 is included.
Purpose: This is offered as an updated, easy-to-read review book for "time-pressed (medical) students" studying for the USMLE Step 1. The authors present the material in the outline format with highlighted key words for easy recognition and recall. The practice examinations reinforce concepts and help the reader practice taking the exam.
Audience: According to the author, the book is specifically geared towards medical students preparing for the USMLE Step 1.
Features: The review is divided into sections that cover immunology, bacteriology, virology, mycology, and parasitology. Numerous useful diagrams and tables are sprinkled throughout the text to summarize important testable information. Case scenarios and clinical presentations are used to help the reader remember key concepts for the examination. Appendixes containing summary tables and trigger words on bacteriology, virology, and mycology also jog the reader's memory.
Assessment: This is a good resource and preparatory tool for medical students studying for the USMLE Step 1. There is a nice balance of didactic text and sample test questions at the end, as opposed to other review books that contain only questions or text. In addition, the online study tools, which include images and text from the book as well as 350 USMLE Step 1-type microbiology questions, are available to the purchaser on the www.studentconsult.com website. The book would benefit from improved editing as an occasional mistake (such as a word substitution of Cryptosporidium for Cryptococcus) has slipped through.