By A. Sahib El-Radhi
Published CRC Press in March 2019 £46.99
This is an excellent way of learning about paediatric symptoms and signs, especially in unwell children. These children can present to a number of different facilities such as primary care, walk in centres, Accident and Emergency departments as well as of course paediatricians. As we all know, it is not always easy to assess a child and it can be sometimes difficult to make the correct diagnosis in an unwell child. This helpful book is different from a standard medical textbook as it does not classify diseases into systems as such. Also, it does not take the traditional approach of reviewing causes, presentation and management of a particular condition. Of course there is nothing wrong with that but this book allows another dimension of learning, reference and education and it does it well.
It looks at problems in a refreshing and practical way. The book looks at issues via a symptoms and signs approach to a significant number of topics grouped into chapters and then takes it from there. Take for example the area of scrotal and testicular swelling on page 141. I chose this as this can be a tricky clinical scenario to deal with –no matter the grade or experience of the healthcare practitioner. It starts with a clinical overview and then discusses possible diagnoses, investigations, top tips and then red flags. This seems to be the theme throughout the book and it is a good way of learning. It is not all about acute presentations though there are plenty here. Another tricky scenario but which is not an acute presentation and is also well covered in this format. On page 163, there is an excellent section on delayed puberty closely followed by precocious puberty and again the latter is up to the same standard as throughout the book.
I would imagine, it is not easy writing a book in this style and look at the beginning of the book, the author is clearly experienced. It is not a big book and contains only 239 pages but this is also one of its strengths, as it is a slim volume that does not take up too much room in the bookshelf. But at the same time, it is accessible and contains an impressive amount of knowledge and advice. I reviewed the paperback edition which is reasonable value for money but the hardback version is more than double the cost and there is no on line version bundled with the price.
All in all, this comes in at reasonable price and like all modern books is well produced. For those in the front line of paediatrics, there is a lot of wisdom here which on a number of occasions, I am sure could prove very useful in managing a young patient who is in front of you.
Dr Harry Brown