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Infectious diseases are the most common pediatric problems facing primary care practitioners and are a frequent concern for dermatologists. Although in North America most of these infections are not serious, their prevention and treatment require familiarity with a myriad of facts, including immunization schedules, incubation periods, diagnostic tests, and treatment regimens. To make matters worse, there are frequent changes in accepted treatment and prevention regimens. The retention of all of this information is probably impossible and certainly not necessary.
The Report of the Committee on Infectious Disease (ie, the so-called Red Book) is a source of essential information on the prevention, diagnosis, and treatment of pediatric infectious diseases. The information is easily retrievable through an excellent table of contents and index. It is compiled by the Committee on Infectious Diseases of the American Academy of Pediatrics. It is authoritative and up to date with a new edition published every 2