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October 1995

Dermatopathology: A Practical Guide to Common Disorders

Author Affiliations

Cambridge, Mass


by George F. Murphy, 521 pp, with 1420 illus, $125, Philadelphia, Pa, WB Saunders Co, 1995.

Arch Dermatol. 1995;131(10):1222. doi:10.1001/archderm.1995.01690220130033

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There are few textbooks that cover both dermatology and dermatopathology well. This 521-page book does just that. The emphasis is on pattern recognition, clinicopathologic correlation, and the most important histopathologic features of common dermatologic disorders. Too often, authors attempt to cover the obscure diseases in great detail; Murphy succinctly and clearly describes common diagnoses and briefly mentions rare disorders.

Chapter 1 is a wonderful introduction to dermatopathology, using definitions of diagnostic terms followed by a clinical example that illustrates each. I will use this chapter for the first-year dermatology residents in my ''Introduction to Dermatopathology'' course this year.

Murphy uses algorithms frequently. Excellent algorithms are presented for spongiotic dermatitis, psoriasiform dermatitis, vesiculobullous diseases, granulocytic dermatoses, granulomatous diseases, and disorders of elastic tissue and collagen. Although there are exceptions to every rule, the algorithms emphasize the key features and are a helpful initial approach. The 1420 clinical and light and electron

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