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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Susan L. F. McLellan, MD, MPH (Tulane University Health Sciences Center)
Description: Dr. Richard Dawood has been an authoritative figure in the realm of travel medicine for many years, and is both the director of a travel clinic and an experienced traveler himself. This fourth edition of his book, updated from the 1992 edition, is a comprehensive reference for the educated and interested lay traveler who wishes to avoid illness and injury while traveling.
Purpose: The book is designed to instruct the traveler in health maintenance and illness prevention while abroad, and provide instruction and resources on how to cope if illness or injury does strike.
Audience: Given that it is a 730-page volume, this book will be most interesting for those travelers who are embarking on a long or adventurous voyage, or who are frequent travelers. It is also an excellent resource for health professionals who counsel travelers.
Features: There are several chapters or sections which will be appropriate for even the casual traveler to mundane destinations, including the introductory overview, the chapter on air and sea travel, and sections of the chapter on environmental and recreational hazards. For travelers heading to more exotic destinations, the sections on diarrheal disease, malaria, and insect precautions, and the chapters on common problems (skin, eye, foot, fever, etc.) and preparations for travel are an excellent general review. Other sections address specific concerns such as altitude illness, skiing and scuba-related injury, and health issues for special travelers such as children, the elderly, and those with underlying medical conditions. Specific infections and many of the medical conditions are discussed in enough detail to educate most healthcare professionals. Such sections may be beyond the scope or interest of the casual reader but will be welcome for the traveler in need of expert advice on a specific topic. The text and appendixes are full of maps, charts, and tables, covering topics ranging from appropriate immunizations to hay fever seasons in various parts of the world.
Assessment: This book is written for the lay traveler, but is relatively complex and comprehensive for the short-term tourist on a controlled itinerary. It is, however, an excellent book for the long-term or frequent traveler, and is full of practical advice for those going off the beaten track. Furthermore, it is more than adequately detailed and referenced to serve as a resource for healthcare professionals preparing and caring for travelers.