Reviewed by Dr Harry Brown
Richard Ham, Philip Sloane, Greg Warshaw Jane Potter Ellen Flaherty
For those of us in primary care, a big chunk of our workload are elderly people and because of demography and other well known factors, that is going to continue as our population ages and elderly medicine workload expands. Management of elderly patient’s problems can be complex as more than one pathology may be going on whilst there may be number of social and cultural problems in the background. Many of these issues are now uniquely handled within the primary care set up, so it is important that we have a good knowledge framework to support our activity.
So step forward this most useful book which can be very helpful both to manage a patient that is front of you or simply to dip in and read out of interest. It is not a huge tome and is “only” just over six hundred pages long and is a paper back. It is not a formal textbook but more of a supportive manual of common issues and problems that we face in daily practice. This to me is major plus of this book, it deals with common and everyday situations and as the title suggests it uses case based scenarios. These scenarios are amplified by the surrounding text which provides the academic backdrop. The style is easy to read and understand and it is simple enough just to dip into the book, read up on an area and not necessarily get involved in the case history side of things.
It is a US book and so some of the subject matter is not always applicable to the UK style of practice but the bulk of the book is certainly relevant to good practice in the UK. I particularly liked the small text boxes dispersed amongst the main text which contain important and useful pearls of wisdom. It is a mature (sixth edition) up to date book published in 2014 and bundled with the price of purchase is web access which includes access on a mobile device. For some, to have an electronic version which is portable is very appealing –on my iPhone the download size is only 70MB.
Overall this is a useful, well written, practical elderly medicine book, ideal for use in primary care. It is reasonable priced and an excellent addition to the bookshelf, virtual or real.
Dr Harry Brown