Edited by Cheston Cunha
Published by Oxford University Press (Published June 2022)
This is a magnificent book which could be described as a “tome” (if you want a definition check out https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/tome) and I would regard that description as a compliment. It is a hard back, sturdily built book which is a pleasure to hold and read and runs to an impressive 1474 pages. It is truly a scholarly work and reading the obituary to David Schlossberg who was the editor of the first two editions, in the preface. You can understand that this amazing polymath has built the foundations of an outstanding textbook. This new third edition, dedicated to his memory is a true blockbuster and a superb one stop shop for exploring clinical infectious diseases.
It is highly detailed textbook and as the title suggests is clinically focussed and it sticks to that. Common and not so common conditions are covered in good detail. Although the book is text driven, there are some good images and tables which amplify and clarify the text. It is a single bulky volume which I much prefer to a 2 volume book as whenever I look anything up, it is not uncommon I am dealing with the wrong volume.
I found this book pretty comprehensive, and I found it difficult to catch this book out and although I am sure it can be done, I am sure it would satisfy most users as a single volume reference book. Whilst reviewing this book, I came across in another situation, the condition of Leptospirosis. Naturally I looked it up on this book and of course it was covered. Chapter 164 covers it really nicely and although it was only 3 pages including references. I found it easy to read, understand and would be excellent for clinicians looking after patients with this condition.
There were also interesting and fascinating chapters on issues that could present to an infectious disease team and may not be obvious. For example, Chapter 3, there is an excellent review on Chronic Fatigue Syndrome whilst Chapter 120 is a thought provoking section on bioterrorism. Being an up-to-date textbook (published in June 2022), there is a good Chapter (Chapter 188) on Coronavirus -19. This is a good 8 page summary and considering the volume of data out there, it is good to have a summary of this calibre, on this condition.
Without doubt, this is a scholarly and detailed but clinically focussed textbook which is highly relevant to clinical practice. There is a substantial array of contributors, mainly from the United States though there are representatives from some other countries. I found this book readable, informative and interesting and can be used as a reference book but also it was interesting enough to simply open it and read at random. I am sure an infectious disease team would enjoy having access to this book.
The purchase price of the book, I think is good value but I think this book would benefit from having on line access built into the purchase price, In saying that, there are many people who prefer to have access to such a good physical book as this and enjoy it. This book deserves success and is a glowing tribute to the late David Schlossberg.
Dr Harry Brown
13th August 2022