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Potter's Atlas of Fetal and Infant Pathology.

Potter's Atlas of Fetal and Infant Pathology

Edited by Enid E Gilbert-Barness, 398 pp, with illus, St Louis, Mo, Mosby, 1999.

Potters Atlas of Fetal and Infant Pathology, edited by Enid Gilbert-Barness, MD, fulfills 2 valuable roles: it is a useful companion to her 2-volume textbook, Potter's Pathology of the Fetus and Infant, and it is a highly informative and concise reference book in its own right. The atlas contains an especially impressive collection of gross photographs, including rare metabolic diseases, chromosomal syndromes, skeletal dysplasias, and organ system--specific pathology, accompanied by relevant microscopic and electron microscopic illustrations.

Dr Gilbert-Barness has done a commendable job of arranging the broad scope of general pediatric pathology topics into well-organized chapters, which include the following: malformations, malformation syndromes, and deformations; dysplasias; disruptions; the embryo and previable fetus; fetal and neonatal death; multiple pregnancies; nutritional diseases; metabolic disorders; and many others. The general pathology chapters of the atlas are arranged in a slightly different order than those of the textbook, but with the exception of subjects that don't lend themselves well to pictorial representation (ie, prenatal diagnosis and molecular genetics), they contain the same major topics. The systemic pediatric pathology chapters follow the textbook closely, except that the visceral neoplasias are included within their respective systemic chapters rather than in a separate chapter. The written material contained in the atlas is clear and succinct. Numerous tables have been compiled throughout the book that provide practical and convenient resource and review material. Although the atlas is not as encyclopedic as the textbook and contains a much briefer written text, it serves as an ideal quick reference and study guide.

The vast majority of the photographs are outstanding, especially the gross photographs. The quality of photographs varies, however, with a few being dark or somewhat out of focus (this is the case for the microscopic pictures more so than for the gross pictures). Nevertheless, all of the illustrations included are carefully chosen and add morphologic clarity to the disease processes they represent. The legends to the figures are complete and allow the figures to stand alone. Although many of the atlas illustrations are also present in the textbook, they are larger and in color in the atlas, thereby augmenting the textbook material.

The audience for this book includes pediatric pathologists, pediatricians, general pathologists, fellows in pediatric pathology, and residents. For those readers with a special interest in pediatric pathology, the atlas functions as a valuable complement to the textbook. For those with a more general interest in pediatric pathology, the atlas alone could serve as an ample and accessible reference book. I believe that the editor has more than achieved her hopes stated in the preface, that a "brief but pertinent text with good illustrations in color (would) be worth `more than a thousand words' to the reader." This reviewer can endorse the atlas in a very personal way, as it was a fundamental resource and a constant companion utilized in my successful review of pediatric pathology for the Pediatric Pathology board examination.

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Title Annotation:Review
Publication:Archives of Pathology & Laboratory Medicine
Article Type:Book Review
Date:Oct 1, 2000
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