Every once in a while there is a textbook that serves as a benchmark against which all subsequent textbooks must be measured. In cardiology, Paul D. White's Heart Disease served until it was superceded by Charles K. Friedberg's Diseases of the Heart. Braunwald's Heart Disease: A Textbook of Cardiovascular Medicine is one that will supercede Friedberg's, for cardiologists. It is more comprehensive, more authoritative, better documented, yet easier to read than those earlier summations of cardiology. It sets a new standard for all textbooks of the future.
This book is imposing, if not forbidding, by virtue of its size. The single volume weighs about 5.42 kg, and it is also available in a two-volume set. It comprises almost 2,000 pages, plus an index of 106 pages. It is divided into four parts: "Examination of the Patient," "Abnormalities of Circulatory Function," "Diseases of the Heart, Pericardium, Aorta and Pulmonary Bed," and