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November 16, 1984

Endocrine Disorders: A Guide to Diagnosis

JAMA. 1984;252(19):2771. doi:10.1001/jama.1984.03350190063027

This article is only available in the PDF format. Download the PDF to view the article, as well as its associated figures and tables.


The preface promises "a practical guide to diagnosis [with] accessible information on the applications, interpretation and limitations of the various diagnostic tests... of interest... to endocrinologists, undergraduate and postgraduate students in internal medicine, and nursing and technical staff who carry out endocrine tests." Herein lies the problem. In staking out such a broad field and identifying that diverse audience, the editor has promised more than his writers deliver.

Chapters 1 through 18 review the methods of clinical measurement, hormone assays, microscopic diagnosis, and body imaging. Some (eg, Tanner's chapter entitled "Growth Charts and Pubertal Staging") provide useful information and a thoughtful perspective that will be helpful for medical students. Others seem too general and of little interest to most medical readers—yet too elementary for those interested in detailed laboratory methods.

Chapters 19 through 35 present endocrine pathophysiology and discuss the relevance of investigational procedures. Most of this is informative, although