August 24, 1984

Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics

Author Affiliations

Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh


by Richard E. Behrman and Victor C. Vaughan III (Waldo E. Nelson, sr ed), ed 12; 1,899 pp, with illus, $75, Philadelphia, WB Saunders Co, 1983.

JAMA. 1984;252(8):1065. doi:10.1001/jama.1984.03350080065037

This article is only available in the PDF format. Download the PDF to view the article, as well as its associated figures and tables.


The 12th edition of the Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics maintains the standard of excellence of the previous editions. It has been substantially modified with many additions and revisions. Overall, the new edition remains as one large volume with 1,810 pages of text plus two large appendices. The previous edition was only slightly longer.

Sections dealing with psychosocial and developmental issues are particularly strong, with relatively little change from the previous edition. Unlike other major pediatric texts, the Nelson text includes sections, albeit brief, on adoption and foster care. In addition, discussions touch on separation of parents and the impact of television on children. Attention-deficit disorders are simply and concisely presented.

Infectious disease sections are well written and complete. Numerous tables have been included to help the clinician form a differential diagnosis of infectious etiologies from dermatologic manifestations. Other tables list distinguishing characteristics of various illnesses such as infectious diarrheas. Unfortunately,