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Fundamentals of Internal Medicine: A Physiologic and Clinical Approach to Disease.

Herbert L. Fred, MD
Arch Intern Med. 1972;129(4):660. doi:10.1001/archinte.1972.00320040136022.
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No one person these days has sufficient knowledge, experience, or skill to write a timely, authoritative text on a subject as complex and multifaceted as internal medicine. Yet, McCombs makes the effort. His courage is laudable; his book is not. Indeed, so many defects mar this edition that only a few examples will be cited here.

Organization, in part, is disruptive and confusing, especially the segment dealing with the gastrointestinal tract (chapter 9). Accounts of temporal arteritis and thrombophlebitis appear concurrently in the portion devoted to cardiovascular diseases (chapter 5). Descriptions of pulmonary embolism show up twice—initially under "Cardiovascular Disease" (pp 396-397) and again under "Pulmonary Diseases" (pp 487-488).

Misinformation, inconsistency, and ill-directed emphasis create major drawbacks. The author classifies epidemic neuromyasthenia as an acute systemic viral disease (p 65), but when discussing the ailment proclaims, "Viral studies have been universally negative" (p 89). Discourse on pernicious anemia spans almost


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