December 1975

Physical Examination of the Surgical Patient: An Introduction to Clinical Surgery

Author Affiliations

Rochester, Minn


ed 4, by J. Englebert Dunphy and Thomas W. Botsford, 414 pp, $16, WB Saunders Co, 1975.

Arch Surg. 1975;110(12):1519. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1975.01360180089030

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It is with a small sense of professional (and national) disloyalty that I issue a note of caution to those contemplating expending the modest price asked for this volume. One cannot object to the perpetual purpose of the book, to serve "as a valuable bridge between basic sciences and clinical surgery," but somewhere a certain thread of continuity, completeness, and excellence has been drawn too finely.

The task of teaching all of the business of physical examination is too great for this book, which is directed toward medical students. There are too many "ifs" and "mays" and not enough "whys." There are too few marvelous old etchings by Diduch, as well as too few modern photographs to link visual timeliness to the many words. There are shadows of yesterday that may confuse some readers, with a paragraph devoted to "lateral aberrant thyroids" and a discussion of long-range shotgun wounds of

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