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November 4, 1983

Brain Sciences in Psychiatry

Author Affiliations

Johns Hopkins University Baltimore

JAMA. 1983;250(17):2376-2377. doi:10.1001/jama.1983.03340170098044

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This textbook and study guide were written for psychiatrists preparing for the membership examination of the Royal College of Psychiatrists, London. It would seem that British psychiatrists are required to understand more about brain sciences than were their American counterparts six years ago, when this reviewer took his board examination.

Beyond its limited primary purpose, the text's value lies in its coherent and brief presentation of neuroscience topics relevant to clinical psychiatry. These range from "Cells of the Central Nervous System" to "Schizophrenia." Because of the book's brevity, no topic can be given the depth of coverage that a senior psychiatrist would wish if he or she were going to study a particular area, eg, the neuroendocrinology of psychiatric disorders. A more serious criticism is that the decision to provide a reading list in lieu of specific references to original sources makes it difficult for the reader to pursue a