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November 2, 1984

Re: Book Review of Do-lt-Yourself Medical Testing

Author Affiliations

Loyola University-Stritch School of Medicine Chicago

JAMA. 1984;252(17):2391. doi:10.1001/jama.1984.03350170009003

To the Editor.—  I am surprised at the review of Do-It-Yourself Medical Testing.1 The reviewer admits that the book is "technically accurate," "passably written," and "comprehensive," but the review contains poor English ("prevent them from themselves"), mixed metaphors ("a monster for those of us in the trenches"), inaccurate law (that it is illegal for unlicensed persons to puncture skin), and bad advice (that physicians ought not to buy this book).Certification of phlebotomists does not constitute licensing. Furthermore, many of the statements in the review are questionable, including, "There is a trend among physicians to write anything that will sell," and "Most people would rather see their physician than buy this 'chemistry set' approach."The volume contains no comprehensive instruction in diagnosis and therapeutics, no do-it-yourself history or physical examination. A quick trip to my local discount book outlet, however, uncovered five separate do-it-yourself advisories on drug therapy, as