By Gavin Clunie, Nick Wilkinson, Elena Nikiphorou and Deepak Jadon
Published August 2018 by Oxford University Press
In the acknowledgement section of the book which is at the beginning, it is stated that some contributors have helped “to establish the Oxford Handbook of Rheumatology at the market leader small textbook for rheumatology”. That does not really surprise me; the Oxford Handbook series continues to go from strength to strength as some of its many constituents are refreshed and updated on a cyclical basis. This excellent book is now in its 4th edition and recently updated as it was published in late 2018. It may be small in size but it packs in 750 pages within the handbook.
Like its other siblings in the series, it has a tough external vinyl cover and between these covers there is an impressive collection of information about rheumatology. Equally as in the other handbooks in the Oxford stable, it is not a textbook in the traditional sense. It has a very good coverage of general rheumatology issues with the clinical need very much in mind. It is great in helping to deal with a specific patient’s problems. Rheumatology covers a multitude of conditions, some common and some rare and this book covers a fair range of material. Like many of its stable mates, the approach to the layout is to state the facts and figures in a practical and user friendly manner. As always, there is a huge amount of information presented to the reader set out in a logical and easy to read format.
This practical approach means it is easy to access the desired information and it is a great help to patient management as the book is clinically orientated. Equally, this book is also great for simply reading relevant sections and reinforcing old learning whilst becoming uptodate in a specific topic. It does not take long to read around a topic and is facilitated by the generous use of bullet points.
Just like other members of the Oxford Handbook family, the book is keenly priced and represents good value for money for the appropriate user. This could be a primary care or secondary care healthcare professional and it would also appeal to both specialist nurses as well as doctors. Anyone with a professional interest in rheumatology would find this book helpful. Its relatively small size makes it portable but despite its small size, it contains a fair amount of detail. The only drawback is that the price does not include digital access which I feel is a shame.
This is an excellent handbook of rheumatology and although it is handbook sized, it packs a big punch. It is full of practical wisdom and advice and well suited to someone who deals with a significant number of rheumatology patients.
Dr Harry Brown