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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Mirza E Perez, PharmD (Temple University School of Pharmacy)
Description: The 5th edition of this well-recognized text (previous edition, 1999), translated from the original German, provides a detailed description of plant-derived medicines by organ system, after a valuable overview chapter. All the major herbals are discussed in a methodical fashion, with ample use of tables, diagrams, and color figures.
Purpose: The purpose of this book is to provide readers with complete descriptions and documentation of available safety and efficacy information on plant-derived medicines. The book meets this objective, even including valuable comments on clinical trials.
Audience: This text is targeted at practicing pharmacists and physicians, but could be useful for students or clinicians in training. It has been prepared by recognized authorities in the field.
Features: The book's nine chapters include a review of medicinal plants and phytotherapy, followed by chapters on the central nervous, cardiovascular, respiratory, digestive and urinary-gynecologic systems, and additional topics. Chapters are further subdivided into sections based on a single herbal medicines, or specific disorders. Discussion of an herbal includes botanical descriptions, constituents, analysis and pharmacokinetics as well as pharmacology/toxicology, indications and contraindications based on clinical trial data. Much is based on the well-regulated German herbal products.
Assessment: Given the complete revision of this edition consistent with the continuing emergence of data in the field, it replaces any previous editions. The book contains pharmaceutically and clinically important information on many of the common herbal medicines seen in practice.