74th edition (1st Edition for this year)
Edited By Rick Kellerman and David Rakel
Published by Elsevier
Yes, you read this correctly, it is in it’s 74th edition and it is published every year and is clearly updated. For example, there is a significant chapter on Covid-19 (page 561) which gives a great general review on the topic and brings together all the information, we have been bombarded with. Because of it’s annual update and publication, it clearly stays on top of the game, in terms of keeping uptodate with events. Reading the preface brings home to the reader, what an undertaking this must be. There are 21 pages of contributors, packed into 1538 pages of high-quality text, sandwiched between a hard back cover.
This is generalised textbook of medicine but also covers psychiatry, skin, men and women’s health as well as children’s care. It is a primarily a text from the United States with most of the contributors coming from that country. However, a global audience will appreciate it’s breadth and depth. It is ideal and authoritative enough for primary care but will also satisfy a secondary care audience who want a general medical textbook which covers a number of specialities as well as internal medicine.
This book is richly endowed with high quality and in depth text but there are plenty of tables, images and boxes making this a substantial and yet user friendly general medical textbook. It is very readable and very clinically focussed allowing the user to read a relevant section and upgrade their knowledge. I was also impressed by descriptions of conditions enhanced by the presence of solid academic background information to enhance the clinical knowledge.
Take for example the excellent section on Psoriatic Arthritis from pages 995 to 999 which gives a superb and highly readable review on the topic. Interestingly both the authors named are actually from the UK. After reading this section, I felt very updated and enjoyed reading this section. This is the style that I found throughout the book and great credit goes to the editors who have had to weld together all the impressive articles from the large number of contributors.
The book seems to give good coverage covering common and not so common scenarios such as on page 473 where there is a 4 page review of Porphyrias. This is a great and freshly updated review of general medicine which would appeal to both specialists and GPs. There is an amazing amount of material within this book which is a solidly produced hardback.
Even better, the purchase of this book includes the ability to have a digital edition at no extra cost. This includes web access as well as via a smart device through an app. All the digital versions are easy to access (scratch off a code on the inside book cover and follow the instructions which are easy to use). Both my iPad and iPhone recognised the content after registration and the download was only 283MB which means that the whole book is on my iPhone even when I have no connectivity.
Best of all this book plus the digital accompaniments comes in at under £80 which is a very keen price for a superb outstanding general textbook of medicine which will appeal to healthcare professions working both in primary and secondary care.
Dr Harry Brown
19th April 2022