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July 5, 1985

Understanding Heart Sounds and Murmurs, With an Introduction to Lung Sounds

Author Affiliations

University of Chicago


by Ara G. Tilkian and Mary Boudreau Conover, ed 2; 265 pp, 125 illus and cassette tape, paper, $24.50, Philadelphia, WB Saunders Co, 1984.

JAMA. 1985;254(1):124-125. doi:10.1001/jama.1985.03360010134047

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An accurate clinical diagnosis of cardiac disease requires a proper understanding of heart sounds and murmurs. Dr Ara G. Tilkian and Ms Mary Boudreau Conover, an RN and a medical educator, published in 1979 a small book to provide help and guidance in eliciting heart sounds and murmurs and in understanding their significance. A second edition has now appeared with modifications to the text and illustrations and with the addition of a new chapter on lung sounds.

It is most unfortunate but regretfully a fact that less attention is paid these days to a careful examination clinically as physicians refer patients for complex and expensive investigations, both noninvasive and invasive. Unfortunately, exciting as these new diagnostic efforts have been, they are not infrequently subject to error and misinterpretation. A correct diagnosis of cardiovascular disease cannot infrequently be made when accurate clinical examination is allied with the appropriate additional investigation.