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In an age when most medical books are multiauthored, one can recognize two types of monographs: one involves a series of contributions by various experts invited to write their respective sections by an editor; the second type represents "proceedings" of a conference or a postgraduate course. However, proceedings do not, in reality, represent the content of a conference. Ideally, a verbatim transcript of a conference, properly edited, with inclusion of visual material and the discussion that followed each presentation, would make interesting reading. Unfortunately, such monographs are few and far between.
The standard method used in most conferences is to request invited speakers' manuscripts in advance of presentation. As a result, chapters of such monographs usually vary, ranging from exhaustive, detailed discussions of the subject with illustrative material, tables, and bibliography far beyond that presented at the meeting, to be one- or two-page abstracts barely containing an outline of the
Selzer A. The Natural History and Progress in Treatment of Congenital Heart Defects. Arch Intern Med. 1973;131(3):465–466. doi:10.1001/archinte.1973.00320090155020
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