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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Earle W. Holmes, PhD (Loyola University Medical Center)
Description: This book presents statistical concepts and practical information concerning the establishment and use of reference values in the clinical laboratory.
Purpose: The book is intended to provide in-depth coverage of some of the newer reference value systems that are expected to play an important role in the future of the field of laboratory medicine.
Audience: It is written primarily for clinical chemists, pathologists, and clinicians but will also be of interest to biostatisticians. Some of the statistical material presented will be too advanced for many of the readers in the primary audience, although the text contains a wealth of practical information that will be understood by all readers.
Features: The book is composed of 10 chapters on topics that include the calculation of reference limits, sample size multivariate reference intervals, time dependent reference intervals, subject-based reference limits and analytical goals. The book contains listings of some useful BASIC computer programs and complete listings of the original data used in many of the sample calculations.
Assessment: This is a significant book that bridges the gap between traditional reference range systems and statistical methods and the newer systems and techniques that represent the wave of the future in the area of reference values. The authors, both of whom are highly regarded in the field of laboratory statistics, have done a thorough job of describing and illustrating the new techniques, and the presentation of these topics in a single, authoritative text makes this book a valuable reference work. The advanced nature of the text (and its high cost) will limit its appeal to the average laboratorian, but it will be an excellent addition to departmental and institutional libraries.