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April 17, 1981

Infections of the Gastrointestinal Tract: Microbiology, Pathophysiology, and Clinical Features

Author Affiliations

Children's Hospital of Buffalo State University of New York at Buffalo

JAMA. 1981;245(15):1590. doi:10.1001/jama.1981.03310400058037

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Diarrhea is a common complaint and a book discussing the mechanisms and clinical management of infectious diarrhea would be a useful addition to the clinician's library; Drs DuPont and Pickering have written such a monograph. The title is more inclusive than the contents: they have not discussed antibiotic associated pseudomembranous colitis, infestation of the gastrointestinal (GI) tract by metazoan parasites, or infections of the GI tract by sexually transmitted organisms or tuberculosis.

The book has a succinct discussion of host-factors influencing susceptibility to, and expression of, infectious diarrhea. The reviews of diarrhea caused by enterotoxin-producing organisms and viruses are comprehensive and accompanied by excellent reference lists. Food-borne diarrheal syndromes and recently recognized agents such as Campylobacter and Yersinia are only briefly discussed in the chapter on epidemiology. In many parts of the world, the physician responsible for the investigation of epidemic diarrhea has no special training in infectious diseases and