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March 2, 1940

The Essentials of Medical Treatment

JAMA. 1940;114(9):825. doi:10.1001/jama.1940.02810090103035

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In the preface to this new book from the Edinburgh school it is stated that the author's primary object has been "to survey the whole range of therapeutic measures, and demonstrate the full resources of modern medicine." Unfortunately it does not seem that these objectives have been fully attained. A considerable amount of information regarding approximately 120 disease states is conveyed, but the recitative manner of its delivery is so redolent of the old style of didactic clinical lecture that one is taken back most unpleasantly to the lecture amphitheater, now happily passé in most leading American schools. The book reads pleasantly—some of the old clinical lectures were delightful to listen to—but the pages do not spring to life and offer help to one who consults them, as those of a textbook of therapeutics might reasonably be asked to do. So thoroughly detached indeed is the entire work that the

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