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The Anatomical Basis of Medical Practice

Edward A. Edwards, MD
Arch Surg. 1972;104(2):227. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1972.04180020105024.
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Faculties toss and turn in the fitful fever of the new curriculum—the anatomists more than anyone. Thus comes a rash of texts shorter than the bad old books of Gray, Morris, and Cunningham. And of course all must now be "relevant," since basic science is out of style. American and British anatomists have indeed produced concise and interesting new anatomies. The continued production of such texts probably stems from the individual nature of curriculum change in each school.

The "Anatomical Basis" is a large book of 907 pages, compared to the 1014 pages of the 1964 edition of Cunningham's Textbook of Anatomy. It weighs almost as much. It is mainly regional in presentation, but with separate chapters on surface anatomy, early embryology; and the circulatory, endocrine, and nervous systems. Roentgen anatomy is particularly well presented, perhaps too extensively in a book intended for all medical students, and only secondarily for


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