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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Augusto Julio Martinez, MD (University of Pittsburgh Medical Center)
Description: The first edition of this encyclopedic textbook was published about 40 years ago by the late Drs. Rubinstein and Russell as a single volume with 309 pages. Since that time, it has remained an authoritative text on nervous system tumors and will continue to be the standard to which all neuro-oncology texts are compared. This sixth edition has grown to two volumes with 1472 pages and 23 chapters written by 27 contributors and is extremely well done and edited by eminently qualified neuropathologists.
Purpose: This edition has extensive coverage of new techniques of diagnostic molecular biology, cellular immunology, immunoperoxidase, flow-cytometry with DNA ploidy measurements and cytology of CSF. The incidence and epidemiology of brain tumors, molecular genetics and cytogenetics, DNA damage and repair, experimental CNS tumors, immunology, and pituitary and other neoplasms of the sellar region, are new chapters.
Audience: Practicing neuropathologists, neuro-oncologists, attending neurosurgeons, clinical neurologists, and residents and fellows in neurosurgery, pathology, and neurology, will be pleased to have this book available.
Features: The text is easy to follow and pleasant to read, covering all areas of neuro-oncology, including newly described lesions with problematic diagnosis, controversial cytogenesis, and diverse terminology. It is comprehensive, with an extensive bibliography. The most recent references are from 1995, but this does not impair its usefulness. The illustrations are beautiful and well chosen, representing the majority of neoplasms described in the text. Many are in color and there are several useful tables. The histopathological descriptions are clear and extremely well done. However, the differential diagnostic issues as well as the prognostic survival date with clinico-pathological correlations are not extensively discussed.
Assessment: This edition, in general, has retained the original format and design, continuing the scholarship of the first five editions. There is no doubt in my mind that this is one of the great texts on neuro-oncology. When compared with the recently published Pathology and Genetics of Tumors of the Nervous System (International Agency for Research on Cancer 1997) by P. Kleihues and W.K. Cavenee, I would like to say that they complement each other, forming ideal and indispensable companions. I recommend this text with genuine enthusiasm and without reservations, and I think that every neuropathology/neurosurgery/neurology library should have its own copy to be used frequently.