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Book and Media Reviews
December 7, 2011

Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics

Author Affiliations

Author Affiliations: East Bay Pediatrics, Berkeley, California (Dr Abbott) (mabbottmd@aol.com); and Children's Hospital and Research Center Oakland, Oakland, California (Dr Vlasses).

JAMA. 2011;306(21):2387-2388. doi:10.1001/jama.2011.1775

Nelson Textbook of Pediatrics has a rich “tradition of scholarship.” Although it is “too formidable in size,” it is an “invaluable” resource for the pediatrician. These descriptors certainly apply to the newly published 19th edition, although they are taken from a review of the 1945 edition.1 In fact, the book has origins dating to 1919, when J. P. Crozer Griffith published The Diseases of Infants and Children. Waldo E. Nelson took over as editor of the fourth edition in 1945; he remained the editor for 30 years, through 6 editions. When he began, the book had 49 contributors and was 1350 pages long. It now has 530 contributors and comprises 2610 pages, plus an online version that is even larger. The 19th edition maintains its status as the “Green Bible”2 of pediatric education and surpasses all previous editions in erudition and usefulness. It is exceptional in every respect.