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From The CriticsReviewer: Vincent F Carr, DO, MSA, FACC, FACP (Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences)
Description: Physical diagnosis has been taught to every medical student but this evidence-based approach now shows us why, presenting one of medicine's most basic tenets in a new and challenging light. The format is extraordinary, taking previously published material and updating the pertinent evidence since the initial publication, affirming or questioning or refining the conclusions drawn from the data.
Purpose: The foreword describes what so many of us in medicine have experienced, "But, with time, I realized that many of the so-called pathognomonic symptoms and signs were so merely because someone, often the person whose name was attached to them, had declared they were." Thusly, this unusual and welcome book is here. The work is truly noble, to get past the ghosts of dogma and look at the evidence objectively. The authors and contributors are veritable experts with a cold eye for objectivity. They have produced an important work.
Audience: This is a book for everyone who has studied medicine and found themselves doubting what they have been taught over the years, not that they have been deluded, but that medical traditions have been unquestionably believed because there was no evidence to believe otherwise. The authors have uncovered the truth.
Features: The format is most interesting, with the original articles presented first, followed by an update re-examining the evidence in light of additional literature. This analysis leads to a recommendation with likelihood ratios to support a diagnosis. For those so inclined, all the statistics are presented in table format for review and references for completeness.
Assessment: This extraordinary, one-of-a-kind book is a valuable addition to every medical library.