Disease occurs when the body's normal functions deviate from the norm. When this happens, the body's natural response is to resist the deviation by triggering molecular, cellular, and systemic responses — responses that later become the building blocks for disease identification and treatment. Sometimes, it's easy to identify these signs and symptoms with a particular disorder. Other times, however, signs and symptoms are harder to recognize and classify. In these instances, disease identification requires care, diligence, skill, and access to the most up-to-date medical resources. Patients need to be assessed, laboratory data needs to be interpreted, and treatments must be devised and implemented in the most efficient manner possible.
Of course, as health care professionals, we know that saying how to identify and manage a patient's disorder and then going out and doing it are two entirely different things. Even with years of education, understanding a particular disorder's pathophysiology can be a daunting, highly complex undertaking.
Indeed, merely knowing the facts isn't always enough.
Atlas of Pathophysiology, Second Edition, is an incredible resource that takes you beyond the facts and into the visual realm. Distinguished by its beautifully detailed illustrations of pathophysiology for more than 200 diseases, this outstanding reference is truly one-of-a-kind: Not only is it filled with extensive full-color depictions of disease processes, it also provides comprehensive explanations and clinical guidance that all health care professionals will find useful.
The atlas is broken down into two parts. In part I, the introductory chapter discusses cell physiology and injury, homeostasis, and the ways disease disrupts the body's equilibrium. Fully expanded chapters follow on cancer, infection, genetics, and fluids and electrolytes and provide the core underpinnings of these important topics — with tables featuring 10 additional disorders.
Part II is divided into chapters by body system, with disorders affecting each body system organized in alphabetical order for easy reference. Each entry begins with a short description of the disorder itself, and then moves into a standardized format that quickly and efficiently covers causes, pathophysiology, signs and symptoms, diagnostic tests and their expected results, and treatments. Part II is further distinguished by the addition of several new diseases, including severe acute respiratory syndrome, West Nile virus, fat embolism syndrome, depression, ectopic pregnancy, pyloric stenosis, and more.
The highly bulleted structure of each entry moves the reader through the information quickly and without compromising the information's integrity. Many disease descriptions are accompanied by Age alerts — invaluable information on the changes in disease prevalence or presentation across the lifespan. Other disease descriptions include Clinical tips, which present a major aspect of patient assessment or patient care associated with that condition.
The extensive full-color illustrations provided by the Anatomical Chart Company clearly illuminate major pathophysiological aspects of dysfunction in each disease. These figures present the alterations of function occurring at the cell, tissue, or organ level, as appropriate to the underlying mechanism of each disorder. In disorders that affect multiple body systems, such as liver failure or hypertension, the effect of the disease on the patient is depicted with inset figures showing the major organ systems affected. This organization allows the reader to quickly review major points of pathophysiology while integrating clinical implications.
Atlas of Pathophysiology, Second Edition, will help students of all health care disciplines recall core anatomy, physiology, and pathology concepts; they'll find that the illustrations aid their understanding and retention of essential pathophysiological and clinical insights. This foundation, integrated with the implications for patient care, will provide the relevant knowledge these students require to develop into safe and competent health are providers. In addition, practicing providers will find updated, accessible information provided in a format that excels in its clarity and ease of use.
Atlas of Pathophysiology, Second Edition, is a worthy addition to any medical library, no matter if it's found in a small physician's office, a college or university, or your own crowded bookshelf. I have no doubt that you'll benefit from its beautiful illustrations, functional layout, and all-around utility.
Nancy C. Tkacs RN, PhD
Assistant Professor of Nursing
University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing, Philadelphia