250 Cases in Clinical Medicine, 4e
By Ragavendra R. Baliga, MD, MBA, Director, Section of Cardiovascular Medicine at OSU East University Hospital, Clinical Professor of Internal Medicine, Ohio State University, University Hospital East
Published November 2011
544 pages /
Brighton and Sussex Medical School
As an Elsevier Student Rep I have been provided with a free review copy of this book. It is a comprehensive review of the index cases in medicine that form the basis of final year OSCEs and the PACES exam for MRCP. All medical specialties are covered and it provides more than enough information for the final year student. Its case focused approach offers a different angle to the popular Oxford Handbook and makes it very helpful for OSCE preparation. However, the level of information does surpass the standard required to pass finals and so students should bear this in mind when reading the book. For postgraduates, however, the information is at the right level.
This is a book with only two main limitations. Firstly, cases are usefully grouped by organ system, which makes it easy to get to the relevant section of the book. However, cases are not listed alphabetically within sections, which makes it difficult to quickly find the case you are interested in - particularly for the longer chapters such as the neurology one. There is an excellent index though, which is one way around this. The second limitation is that the figures are in black and white. In this era where printed books are directly competing with online resources, colour figures should be an absolute prerequisite. Addressing these issues would enhance yet further the value of the book.
However, overall this is an excellent book and comprehensively tackles the medical cases with which the final year student and PACES candidate should be familiar. If you want a case-based book that will take you through to ST level or equivalent, and want to impress in exams, I would recommend the investment. It is a thickish text, however, and to get through it before the exam, candidates should buy it well in advance in order to get the most out of it.
Posted 13th Aug 2012
St George's, University of London
If you prefer to learn medicine by cases or diagnosis, this book is worth looking into. Compared to the previous 3rd edition, this 4th edition is a lot smaller and handy for wards/travel. Each diagnosis is written with history, salient features in history and examination, and how to diagnosis. The level of details is above a junior clinical medical student – but is close to the level of a final year medical student. There are also ‘advanced level’ questions written to each case, which are in the level of postgrad medicine and can be used to prepare junior doctors for MRCP.
Most of the images are black and white, but the important pictures that needed to be in color (i.e. dermatology, ophthalmology) are in color. This book does not replace a good clinical medicine textbook, but can be used in adjunct to allow the best learning and to cover the vast diversity of all areas of medicine and its subspecialties.
I especially like the chapter/case (number 125) of abdominal masses, covering the different diagnosis of masses in different regions of the abdomen. Succinct and well explained in preparation for final year OSCEs or postgrad PACES and for the very keen medical student.
This review is written by an Elsevier Student Rep.
Posted 8th Aug 2012
This is an incredible text. A vast improvement from the 2002, third edition. In terms of size, this text is small enough to fit into the hospital clinic white coats, and its weight is comparable to the baby Kumar and Clarke or oxford handbook of clinical medicine.
But what is unique, is that this text takes the commonest conditions, and presents each condition as a stationed OSCE. Giving clear, consisted instructions as to what one must look for in the patient history, the key findings on examination, diagnosis and multiple viva questions.
For all students who wish to receive the medical prize for finals, and to gain distinction. This is the book which will enable you to achieve it. In terms of content, this neat text is worth its weight in gold. I am gutted that I did not discover the latest version of this book earlier. An absolutely fantastic text- up to date, with the latest clinical trials and diagnostic techniques.
This book can be used for UK, USA and European exams too. Incredibly easy to use. Its more readable and memorisable than the oxford handbook of clinical medicine.
Everyone should have a look at this text. It is easily the best text for clinical medicine available.
Posted 12th May 2012
This book is aimed at people taking PACES, so in effect is the next step on from final year OSCE’s. It is a small compact book, so could be taken onto the ward although it is quite heavy. It is split into each system and at the start of each chapter takes you through the basic examination of that system, which is very useful, before going onto the cases relevant to that system. Each case is then explained in the same outline of; instructions, salient features, questions and then endnotes with references to further reading.
I found this a really useful book, it gives you a lot of the snappy phrases required in exams to trot that examiners are looking for. It also provides focussed information on each case. I wish I had had this book for finals as it is exactly what we needed. This isn’t a book to teach you about every case, you need to know the background and the underlying medicine, what this book helps you do is put it altogether, so you know which bits are relevant and which to leave out.
The only criticism is that although the pictures in the dermatology and ophthalmology section are in colour, the pictures in other sections aren’t and I think that this would have been helpful.
Overall a very useful book to help you learn focussed examinations.
Posted 6th May 2012