By Barbara Aehlert
Published by Elsevier (October 2017)
It is well worth reading the preface to this new book as it will give a valuable insight into the ethos of the book. The author is based in the USA and has written an easy to understand guide to interpreting ECGs. I think she has succeeded and has produced a well illustrated and most of important of all, an easy to understand guide to ECGs. It is really nicely illustrated and the text is chopped up into small segments and is logical in its approach. Its style is clear, very understandable but informative and and concise. I suspect that many of us who will approach this book, will have some basic understanding of ECGs. Even so, this book does plenty of handholding in an engaging and relaxed reading style.
There are plenty of text boxes, tables and often the format describing a rhythm abnormality follows a standard and easy to follow pattern. There are also plenty of ECG pearls and associated knowledge is also covered. There are also multiple choice questions and yes there are rhythm strip quizzes with answers.
There is clearly a lot of thought gone into the production of this book and it manages to create a really good educational resource that is helpful and not overwhelming and not too technical. Even so, it cleverly provides a lot of detail and educational material in a relaxed and calm manner. It is now in a mature 6th edition and every word counts and the clarity of explanations in what can be a difficult to understand topic, is really good. Equally the quality of illustrations is really sharp and high quality and in particular the ECG rhythm strips are crystal clear.
The book runs to just over 300 pages and if you are really keen, it won’t take too long to read it all the way through. If that is not possible then reading individual sections is perfectly feasible whilst it can also be used as a reference source. It essence, it acts as a very helpful ECG assistant with tables, boxes and pearls adding to the educational experience.
This new edition is really good and is well written in a helpful and supportive manner and is a good candidate if you want to up your game in learning more about ECGs. It is reasonably priced for a high quality product and if I had one criticism; is that it does not come with an e-edition for use in a smartphone and tablet. This would be ideal when the ECG is in front of you and the book is not readily available. Apart from that a really good book which is in essence a good guide to learn more about ECGs.
Dr Harry Brown