One can always greet the arrival of a new textbook to the already-crowded shelves with skepticism: Why is this book necessary (or needed or justified or desirable)? In the preface to Chest Medicine, the editor-authors point out that in the past decade, we have made great impacts on the diagnosis and treatment of cardiorespiratory disease. This has resulted from the rapid deployment of concepts and monitoring techniques from the pulmonary physiology laboratory to the bedside.
Compacted into 657 pages, including an excellent index, are an initial section (120 pages) on lung ventilation and perfusion and a middle section (103 pages) on diagnostic techniques. The third section (399 pages) consists of chapters, really monographs, on such topics as obstructive airway disease, interstitial pneumonitis, pulmonary thromboembolism, and infections. References to the recent literature are extensive, certainly enough to stimulate the chest internist or thoracic surgeon to read more.
Despite the contributions of