Oxford Textbook of Stroke and Cerebrovascular Disease
Oxford University Press
Edited by Bo Norrving
Published on line March 2014
Price on application
Has the day of the large textbook finally ended? More and more textbooks are migrating on line, sometimes associated with the print version or they are stand alone web offerings and no physical book is available unless purchased separately. This particular book from the well regarded publisher, Oxford University Press (OUP) was reviewed as an on line offering and I have to say it was very impressive. The advantages are obvious, no carrying around weighty tomes (or lying looking pretty in a library bookshelf yet rarely consulted) with the book’s contents accessible from any Internet enabled computer. Also the search possibilities of an electronic resource are more efficient and accessible and the book is easier to update in this state. Of course you have to have good on line access but nowadays that is not difficult. It would be nice to also have this book available as an app for all those mobile devices such as tablets and smartphones.
However through the web browser, this book was easily accessible and readable. There are 24 chapters, laid out in a logical fashion, in list form. Simply click on a chapter and all the content is there. Some people struggle to adapt to reading from a screen but many people are now adapting. I found the screen layout pleasing on the eye and easy to read. However it is the quality of content that should be important as well as the accessibility. Coming from a distinguished publisher, the content should be of a high quality.
Since stroke is a common condition (the first sentence of the first chapter neatly summaries it-it states “Stroke is the second most common cause of death worldwide and a frequent cause of adult disability in developed countries”) that presents acute and long term problems, there is plenty to here to interest both specialists and the GP. Though there is a lot of detail here that may not be of great or immediate interest to a GP with some chapters of more interest than others. However it offers a good all round resource for a wide range of healthcare professionals who are involved with stroke care.
By Dr Harry Brown