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February 1979

Dx + Rx: A Physician's Guide to Medical Writing

Author Affiliations

Department of English University of Rochester Rochester, NY 14627

Am J Dis Child. 1979;133(2):224-225. doi:10.1001/archpedi.1979.02130020116032

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Every physician and medical student who is preparing a paper for publication or for a conference should read Dx + Rx: A Physician's Guide to Medical Writing. This well-written, witty, and practical study brings into proper focus the problems a writer must face in the preparation of his paper. Acknowledging the widely recognized dreariness and often inane and irresponsible verbosity of many technical papers, Dr Dirckx offers valuable directions for attaining clarity, accuracy, readability, and style.

The book is divided into three major parts: "The Anatomy of Language"; "Sentences and Paragraphs: The Physiology of Language"; and "Blunders and Blather: The Pathology of Language." Throughout, the author is concerned with the nature of language, the importance of grammar, and the means of achieving a readable, cultivated style.

In part 1, the first chapter stresses the importance of words in manipulating ideas and relationships. Good writing requires skill and discipline because language is

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