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Book and Media Reviews
May 13, 2009

Uncommon Causes of Stroke

JAMA. 2009;301(18):1932-1938. doi:10.1001/jama.2009.615

The speed of advancement is breathtaking in the world of modern medicine. This aspect is most evident in stroke medicine. It is well known that to keep up to date, investigators need to attend current conferences and maintain personal contacts with other investigators in the area, because published papers present a state of knowledge that is already half a year behind real time. Books, in the moment they appear in print, are already at least 1 or 2 years behind the current state of knowledge. This is owing to the intrinsic mechanisms of book preparation, editing, and printing. Nevertheless, even in this era of Web-accessible information, books are still published and sought as a source of learning, despite the availability of constantly updated Internet-based databases. Even the best computerized resource cannot replace a good monograph as a basic reference in the field. From this standpoint, Uncommon Causes of Stroke, edited by Louis Caplan and founding editor Julien Bogousslavsky, represents a typical aspect in which books are superior to any computerized database or online information.

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