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By definition, an atlas is a compilation of plates, charts, or tables illustrating any subject; the word derives from Atlas, who carried the world on his shoulders. It is indeed a heavy burden that D. H. Cummack bears, that of collecting in one book the roentgenographic manifestations of disorders of the gastrointestinal and biliary tracts, and the liver. To accomplish this goal, Cummack presents more than 1,000 high quality reproductions of appropriate roentgenographs. A book of this sort is autobiographical: it tells of the author's encounters with the common and the uncommon; of landmarks he has learned to recognize as significant of disturbances—or not; of shortcuts or newly discovered roads he has taken to find the enemy—despite nature's camouflage and the limitations of the method.
The author possesses a rare talent-brevity. His illustrations are explained by terse captions containing relevant clinical and roentgenographic data, their succinctness refreshing when compared to
Smith MJ. Gastrointestinal X-Ray Diagnosis.. Arch Intern Med. 1971;128(4):647-648. doi:10.1001/archinte.1971.00310220155039