Textbook of Public Health

Textbook of Public Health

1941 PUBLIC HEALTH BOOK R E V I E W S A noteworthy feature of this work is the amount of space given to such important branches of public Textbook o...

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A noteworthy feature of this work is the amount of space given to such important branches of public Textbook of Public Health. By W. M. FreezER, O.B.E., health as tuberculosis, maternity and child welfare, and M.D., CH.B., M.SC., D.P.H., and C. O. STALLYBRASS, the school medical service. The chapter on genetics M.D., CH.B., D.P.H., M.mC.S., L.R.C.P. Edinburgh: serves as an introduction to mental deficiency. The E. & S. Livingstone. 10th edition, 1940. Pp. final chapter deals with civil defence, and it is no xvi + 488. Price 21s. net. criticism to say that it is already incomplete. One hopes that by the time the next edition appears there It is now some years since the last edition of this book will be no necessity to include this chapter. was published, and in the interim numerous revolutionary This is certainly one of the most comprehensive and changes have been effected in public health. It is there- readable books on hygiene available for the student or fore with interest that the reader will examine this new practitioner. The authors claim justifiably that it edition, in which Professor Hope has retired from a fulfils all the requirements of the D.P.H. examination, partnership with Dr. Stallybrass, and has been suc- and it should have an extensive sale. The publishers ceeded by Professor Frazer. The authors have used have done their work well, and the text, though fairly their opportunities well, and the result is a most com- closely set, is vdry readable. prehensive and readable treatise. To deal in detail with the various chapters, it may be said that the section on climate is very comprehensive Cerebrospinal Fever. By DENIS BRINTON,D.M. (OXON), F.mC.P. (fOND.). 1041. Edinburgh: E. & S. and contains all that a student, or even a Medical Livingstone. 4photographs. pp. vm+168. Price Officer, might be expected to know, though the reviewer 8s. 6d. net. would like to have seen a rather fuller account of the Books on diseases which show a secular periodicity uses and methods of application of ultra-violet rays. There is a good account of the measurement of sus- tend themselves to appear in waves. The epidemic of pended matters in air, and the effects of impure air are cerebrospinal fever which was present during the last well described. Certain readers will perhaps find the war gave rise to at least four books on this condition, section on clothing hardly full enough. The chapter on not to mention Sir Humphrey RoUeston's Lumleian smoke is generally excellent, and the student will find Lectures. Dr. Brinton's book is the first to deal with the description of the flue-gas recorder well done. In the present outbreak. This being the case the author the chapter on water a diagram of a mechanical filter has perhaps wisely restricted his field, and he specifically mentions that the bias of the book is clinical, and that might have been inserted to advantage. attempts have been made to reduce the number of The chapters which deal with sanitary matters and clinical forms formerly described, and to relate sympenvironmental public health are sufficiently full for the toms to morbid anatomical changes. The book is therepurpose, and the illustrations are diagrammatic and fore not really a textbook. The historical and epidemioclear. In the chapter on sewage there is a useful sum- logical sections are brief, and do not cover all the recent mary of the findings of the Fifth Report of the Royal work on these subjects. There is no mention of the Commission on Sewage Disposal and refuse tips are effect of injury as a possible predisposing factor, and discussed fairly fully. As might be expected in a book prophylactic inoculation is not dealt with. which emanates from a city like Liverpool, the chapter These are, however, minor drawbacks to a work which on housing administration is comprehensive and lucid, should be of great value to the clinician. The clinical and is illustrated by a number of instructive maps. The features are well described. The author generally heavy naphtha method of dealing with bugs is well emphasizes that the disease is essentially a septicaemia, described. Books on hygiene tend to be either too dis- and discusses the symptoms according to the four main cursive or too brief on the question of food, and there- stages of the disease. He has been able to reduce the fore the discussion in the present work will he read special varieties to the fulminating form, the abortive with interest. Opposite page 9,14 there is a valuable form, the chronic septicaemic form, and the posterior table on vitamins, but remarks on meat inspection-- basic meningitis of infants. The section on differential admittedly a difficult subject to include in a single diagnosis is especially well done, though the author may work--might have been expanded somewhat, including perhaps be considered optimistic when he states that further extracts from the Memo. 62 (Foods). in all other forms of acute meningitis the correct The chapter on vital statistics is clear and adequate diagnosis is given by examination of the cerebrospinal from a descriptive standpoint. It includes a brief dis- fluid. cussion of Kuczynsky's work on gross and net reproducThe sections on treatment are probably the most tion rates, but it would have been advisable to illustrate important in the bo~)k. The author adopts Banks's by a concrete example the method of calculating a technique without variation, and a clear description is standardised death rate. There does not appear to be given of the dosage of the sulphonamide drugs, and of any reference to the Registrar-General's area compara- their toxic effects. He considers that idiosyncrasy is the bility factor. There is a short section on the methods of most important factor in the causation of granulocytostatistics in which correlation is briefly described. The penis. Although there is no question that sulphonamide authors should, however, consider substituting standard therapy has been an outstanding advance in the treaterrors for probable errors. The chapters on epidemi- ment of this disease, the author is perhaps disinclined ology and infectious diseases are very useful and reflect to admit that the present epidemic may not have been the experience of the authors. of the extreme virulence which characterized some 117