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Books, Journals, New Media
October 21, 1998

Internal MedicineCecil Textbook of Medicine

Author Affiliations

Harriet S.MeyerMD, Contributing EditorJonathan D.EldredgeMLS, PhD, Journal Review EditorRobertHoganMD, adviser for new media


Not Available


edited by J. Claude Bennett and Fred Plum, 20th ed, one CD-ROM, requires 8MB RAM, 10MB free disk space, CD-ROM drive, 256 colors mouse, PC at least 386 with Windows at least 3.1 and DOS 5.0 or Macintosh 68020 with System 7 or higher, $150, ISBN 0-7216-6417-2, Philadelphia, Pa, WB Saunders, 1998 (includes a drug database of approximately 800 drugs).

JAMA. 1998;280(15):1368. doi:10.1001/jama.280.15.1368-JBK1021-3-1

I decided that the best way to review the new CD-ROM version of the Cecil Textbook of Medicine, 20th edition, was to use it in my office practice for a week. I figured that would be the most accurate way to assess whether the CD-ROM format facilitated information retrieval as compared with a standard textbook. I must say at the outset that I went into this effort as a textbook-oriented reader; I enjoy the heft of a book and the ability to quickly turn to particular pages. Nevertheless, by the end of the week, I was awed by the searching power that the CD-ROM provides.

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