For the past twenty years the publishers of THE MERCK MANUAL, one of the most widely used sources of medical information in the world, realised that more and more copies of the guide were being purchased by people who were not healthcare professionals, despite the fact that it had never been advertised and was not written for public use. Recognising the public's increasing need for access to the same medical information doctors have, Merck responded with the HOME EDITION. This contained virtually all the information in the physician's version, but in easy-to-understand, everyday language, with a reader-friendly format. Since its publication three years ago the HOME EDITION has gone on to sell more than 2 million copies worldwide. Now Merck have updated the edition to cater for the changing medical environment. The new edition contains 35 new chapters on subjects ranging from Gene Therapy and the warning signs of cancer to biological warfare and terrorism and with 64 new illustrations and colour plates along with new tables on emerging drugs, THE MERCK MANUAL is the only home reference guide all health conscious readers will need.
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Compiled by 200 internationally respected medical experts for Merck, the market leader in the field of medicine.From Booklist:
The Merck Manual, now in its seventeenth edition, has been a standard medical reference source for over 100 years. The first home edition, published in 1997 and translated into 12 languages, was a welcome addition to consumer health reference collections. Just as librarians begin to worry about its age, Merck has released a second home edition. The editors have completely revised and rewritten the manual, adding a great deal of new material in the process. All of the editors, contributors, and editorial board members are physicians or academics with doctorates.
The format of the book has not changed. A detailed table of contents lists 25 sections divided into chapters. The first, "Fundamentals," explains basic anatomy and physiology, the aging process, fitness, communicating with health professionals, and legal and ethical issues. The others cover specific organs, systems, diseases and disorders, drugs, and first aid. The sections dealing with organs and systems begin with the biology of the system and then explain the symptoms, diagnosis, prognosis, and treatment of diseases that may affect it. There are color diagrams of relevant anatomy as well as an eight-page insert of anatomical charts. This new edition has added material on violence against women, sexual dysfunction, chromosomal and genetic abnormalities in children, and travel health. The drug section now includes information about medicinal herbs and nutraceuticals and their interactions with other drugs. A new section called "Special Subjects" covers medical decision making, surgery, complementary and alternative medicine, amyloidosis, familial Mediterranean fever, and diseases of unknown origin. A series of appendixes contains information on weights and measures, common tests, generic and trade names of drugs, and resources for referrals.
Although it has fewer, less colorful illustrations than the American College of Physicians Complete Home Medical Guide (DK, 1999) and lacks the flow charts of The Harvard Medical School Family Health Guide (Simon & Schuster, 1999), The Merck Manual of Medical Information continues to provide the most current, detailed medical information in a format and language that lay readers will understand at a reasonable price. Libraries owning the 1997 edition will want to update and the others will want to add this excellent resource to their consumer health reference collections. RBB
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