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August 7, 1981

Disorders of the Respiratory System

Author Affiliations

Massachusetts General Hospital Boston

JAMA. 1981;246(6):683. doi:10.1001/jama.1981.03320060085033

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This is a short book that has been designed primarily for medical students as an introduction to respiratory disorders. It is heavily weighted toward physiological considerations, to which almost one half of the text is devoted. The physiological topics are sometimes presented in an individualistic and imaginative manner, but often in more detail and complexity than is suitable for medical students (or medical practitioners). The authors indicate that some sections may be of little interest to the individual reader and too sophisticated and complex to be grasped on first reading; this is true. The writing style makes the reading somewhat tedious. The nuances produced by transatlantic differences in language play no role in this. However, the style seems to be more appropriate as verbal lecture material than as written word.

The major limitation of the book is its application to clinical use. Little space is left to the clinical entities,