When writing a textbook for general practice, you are instantly faced with a problem; what to include and what to leave out. Just about anything can come in through the door in a GP surgery but you’ve only got enough space (1000 pages in this case) to cover some of it.
So what do you do? Outline common medical conditions or clinical procedures or aspects of practice management and QOF or focus on where to buy the best tweed jackets? The Oxford Handbook of General Practice sets out to cover all of the above, (well apart from the tweed bit anyway!)
The book itself breaks general practice down into the usual medical and surgical specialties and the style of the chapters typifies the other books in the Oxford Handbook series (i.e. a no frills, systematic list of the essential history, examination, investigations and management of each condition).
As with many modern textbooks, this is evidence-based throughout and the authors have included one or two key review articles to read for each important/common conditions e.g. COPD. In addition to literary recommendations for further reading, useful websites for patients (and medical students) have also been suggested, where appropriate.
This book contains easily enough information for medical students and GP registrars alike and will doubtlessly sever you well when you write your fourth year notes; especially given that it has practical advice about sick notes, prescribing and a fool-proof (written on red paper) section on emergencies in general practice.
When I was writing my own notes on general practice, this was the best book, by a country mile. I’d definitely recommend it!
Reviewed By: Ian Anderson (01.09.2006)
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