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July 1975

Synopsis of Ophthalmology

Arch Ophthalmol. 1975;93(7):545. doi:10.1001/archopht.1975.01010020561025

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This deceptively small volume is more than a synopsis, more even than a text: it is an intellectual exercise in which the author leads the student through the steps of ocular diagnosis largely by the Socratic method.

In so doing, he first designates the eye as the "most important square inch" of the body and defends this characterization by citing the information that can be gained by a careful ocular history and examination. He then provides the tools necessary to gather this information and to interpret it. History-taking in his hands becomes a dynamic sequence of eliciting, comprehending, applying, analyzing, synthesizing, and evaluating the patient's complaints as stated in his own words and guided by the examiner's leading questions. Both the general processes and the interpretation of specific symptoms are well-covered in the first two chapters.

The third chapter describes the steps of a thorough eye examination and useful hints

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