Description: This is the first edition of a pocket companion to The ICU Book, 3rd edition (Lippincott, Williams & Wilkins, 2007). Both works are written by Dr. Paul Marino.
Purpose: This is a bedside quick read for the clinician.
Audience: Medical students, postgraduate trainees, and fellows are an appropriate audience for this work, which is based on a highly successful book that has gone through three editions spanning over 15 years.
Features: Content is designed to parallel the main text. Thus, cardiopulmonary critical care opens the book, followed by organ specific considerations including renal, acid-base, transfusion, nutrition, neurology, infection, and pharmacology. Three concluding appendixes describe units and conversions, lab reference values, and additional physiologic relationships. Chapters are written in outline form and feature many of the tables and equations from the parent text. While the flow of content in the parent text is recreated in this pocket version, not all chapters are specifically summarized. References date to four years or more from the time of publication and reflect original work in the majority of cases. They have not been updated from those used in the larger work published in 2007. Tables and black-and-white line drawings reproduce with good effect. Reference lists are sufficiently long to allow the reader independent access to supporting material. An extensive subject index provides separate citations for figures and tables.
Assessment: This book effectively reproduces the major content areas of the parent text. I was disappointed that references were not updated and noted some surprising typographical errors despite the goal of simple reproduction from the original text. Nonetheless, the author has made an excellent reference work into an effective pocket companion.