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September 29, 1978

Neurological Differential Diagnosis: An Illustrated Approach

Author Affiliations

Northwestern University Medical School Evanston, Ill

JAMA. 1978;240(14):1539. doi:10.1001/jama.1978.03290140081037

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Dr Patten's book is a primer, in large format, with clean typography and abundant white space. There are many line drawings, all attractive and informative. Brief case reports are used freely to emphasize important points. The book is practical, sensible in its emphasis, and well written.

Who should read this book? It seems to me to be a good bet for psychiatrists, generalists, or internists who wish to review clinical neurology in as painless a fashion as possible, unencumbered by references and esoterica. It is too basic for the neurology resident. If, as I am convinced, medical students learn neurology best by the case method (reading in depth after examining their patients and reviewing the case with their teacher), there is not enough in this book to fulfill their needs. Unfortunately, many medical schools lack such an approach; perhaps the reading of Neurological Differential Diagnosis can provide a reasonable alternative.