Reviewed by Dr Harry Brown
Papadakis M. McPhee S and Rabow M.
McGraw Hill Educational
We all need a general textbook to help us get by when we either need to refresh knowledge or look up something. There is plenty of choice, we could look up online resources and many of them are free but are they up-to-date or regularly assessed? They may well be but never forget that there are some really good traditional textbooks out there. Sometimes they cover specific areas such as medicine, surgery paediatrics etc but it can take considerable expense and time to build up a library to cover all the major specialties.
So step forwards this book, now I am not saying that it is the ultimate one stop shop for all medical issues that is impossible. However it is good source of well written advice and guidance for primary care practitioners in particular (though plenty here for secondary care) and has a lot going for it. On the down side, it is an American book (nothing wrong with that) and of course will not be 100% relevant to UK practice. However there is plenty here to interest a UK practitioner.
I reviewed the PDF version of the book which means I can access it on my computer and more importantly on a mobile device, in my case an iPhone which proved most helpful in my every day practice. One disadvantage was that I was not able to copy and paste information from the PDF document – which is a shame.
Another advantage of this book is that it comes out every year, so that means it is constantly refreshed and updated. I would suspect that a user does not need to buy it every year as one copy is likely to remain relevant for some time. Looking at the chapters and the text, it is fairly obvious that the subject areas are covered are substantial and huge and the detail is pitched just about right for a GP. It is not too detailed but certainly gives a good description of the topic, ideal for quick delve in and read around.
There are 42 chapters and over 1,600 pages of text and considering the cost of the book, is good value for money. Interestingly the kindle edition available from Amazon http://www.amazon.co.uk/dp/0071806334/ref=rdr_ext_tmb which I would guess would be similar to the digital edition I reviewed, is £28.75 at the time of writing of this review.
This is a good general textbook of medicine and a number of associated specialities, (check out the table of contents of Amazon) and for the cost, I think represents fair value for money for the interested healthcare professional.
Dr Harry Brown