"This book is intended for anyone directly involved in patient care, and assumes a rudimentary knowledge of medicine." So state the authors in a brief preface, and they have hit their target exactly.
This book is neither a pocket-sized handbook for house staff, chock-full of lines and tables, nor an encyclopedic textbook of medicine. Rather, it contains sharply focused discussions of what to do at the bedside, under such titles as "Sudden Death," "Respiratory Failure," "Monoarticular Arthritis," and "Septic Shock." The book is divided into nine sections covering the major organ systems. Under each section there are from two to ten chapters dealing with specific areas in five to ten pages. For example, the section on cardiology contains chapters on sudden death, catheterization, coronary artery disease, arrhythmias, valvular disease, myopathy, congestive heart failure, cor pulmonale, pericardial disease, and hypertension.
Each chapter discusses only the pertinent facts of history, physical examination,