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Customer Review

7 of 8 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars It just keeps getting better..., 8 April 2010
This review is from: Davidson's Principles and Practice of Medicine: With STUDENT CONSULT Online Access, 21e (Principles & Practice of Medicine (Davidson's)) (Paperback)
Davidson's Principles and Practice of Medicine has somehow managed to get better with age - and the 21st edition carries on this tradition. While staying true to its foundations, it has brilliantly incorporated the latest in medical advances and treatment. The first chapter itself reminds us of the kind of textbook it aims to be - one encompassing all aspects of medicine, including "Good Medical Practice" as it is titled. The issues covered in this first chapter are important in both undergraduate and postgraduate education, and is oft-tested exam material. I especially liked the section on ethics, as the various definitions commonly tested are mentioned. Chapters 2 and 3 go on to develop further on this all-inclusive theme, covering basic pharmacology and genetics. These opening chapters provide good background to the rest of the book, and are of course, vital to the overall understanding of medicine.

One of the most useful chapters was Chapter 5 - Environmental and Nutritional Factors in Disease, because it compiled some of the disease processes that do not fit neatly in other conventional categories; things such as hypothermia, radiation exposure and frostbite are covered. The remaining chapters largely cover the medicine in practice. Some chapters are devoted to entire diseases such as HIV/AIDS and Diabetes, stressing their increasing prevalence and importance. The book is superbly written - uncomplicated and very easy to follow without losing your place. The addition of an overview of the relevant clinical examination at the start of each chapter is great for a quick reminder of the basics, and ensures continuity between all the books in the Davidson's family of textbooks. Functional anatomy and physiology is also briefly covered at the start of each chapter - just enough detail for clinical years.

This edition is full of photographs, diagrams, tables and radiological images which break up the text wonderfully and are genuinely useful. The cardiovascular disease chapter has step-by-step ECG's which are easy to understand at any stage of medical education.

In fact, that is the selling point of this book - it is just as beneficial at any stage of medical training, and that is a rarity. In my opinion, it is an underestimated textbook in the UK. It is a must-have in my bookshelf though, and is an excellent core textbook to use throughout your medical career.
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