The Merck Manual of Medical Information, Second Edition: The World's Most Widely Used Medical Reference - Now In Everyday Language

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9780911910353: The Merck Manual of Medical Information, Second Edition: The World's Most Widely Used Medical Reference - Now In Everyday Language
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Drawing on the expertise of dozens of medical experts, a new edition of the internationally acclaimed medical reference includes up-to-date information on heart disease, legal issues, medical tests and treatments, drugs, signs and symptoms, diagnoses, resources for additional information, and coverage of such current concerns as anthrax and smallpox. 500,000 first printing.

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Compiled by 200 internationally respected medical experts for Merck, the market leader in the field of medicine.

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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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