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Mosby's Diagnostic and Laboratory Test Reference.

Mosby's Diagnostic and Laboratory Test Reference, Sixth Edition. Kathleen D. Pagana and Timothy J. Pagana. St. Louis, MO: Mosby, An Affiliate of Elsevier Science, 2003, 1053 pp., $34.95, softcover. ISBN 0-32302049-6.

This reference text, now in its sixth edition, is a systematic catalog of diagnostic procedures and laboratory tests. It is easily readable and organized in a fashion that will be useful to clinicians and laboratorians alike. The book consists of three main parts: an introductory user's guide to test preparation and procedures; the body of the text, which addresses >500 diagnostic procedures and laboratory tests in alphabetical order; and appendices.

The introductory section describes the most common types of specimens-including blood, urine, and stool-in addition to common types of diagnostic procedures, such as nuclear scanning, ultrasound studies, and endoscopy. For each topic the text includes an overview and background information as well as guidelines for specimen collection or performance of the procedure. This material serves as a good primer for the systematic description of tests and procedures.

The listing of laboratory tests and diagnostic procedures begins with abdominal ultrasound and concludes with the xylose tolerance test. For these entries, and everything in between, there is a concise summary of important information. The information includes (wherever applicable) the name of the test, the type of test, typical findings, possible critical values, test explanation and related physiology, contraindications, potential complications, interfering factors, procedure and patient care, home care responsibilities, abnormal findings, and miscellaneous notes. Each heading begins with the formal name of the entry, followed by alternative names as well as common abbreviations. Special symbols are contained within the entries to denote drug interferences as well as patient teaching points for clinicians.

The appendices offer alternative listings of the tests and procedures contained in the text other than the alphabetical listing. These include a list of tests by organ system and a list of tests by type, as well as a standard alphabetical index of important terms. These appendices enhance the ability of readers to use the text when the exact name of the test is uncertain.

In summary, this handbook is an excellent resource for those who want a quick, concise summary of a particular laboratory test or diagnostic procedure. It is well organized, easy to understand, and small enough to fit into a lab coat pocket. It would be a good addition to the reference collection of any clinical laboratorian.

William Clarke

Department of Pathology

Johns Hopkins Medical Institutions

Baltimore, MD 21287
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Author:Clarke, William
Publication:Clinical Chemistry
Date:Sep 1, 2003
Words:414
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