REVIEW: Pocket Handbook of Small Animal Medicine (Kit Sturgess)

Pocket handbook of Small Animal Medicine (Kit Sturgess)

As a vet student this lab-coat pocket sized book is perfect as a quick reference to clinical exams with flow charts covering many of the common presenting complaints organised by organ system and with a section on emergency procedures is very good. When combined with a copy of the BSAVA Procedures Guide – this book does not describe how to do the procedures listed – it is absolutely unbeatable.

The book itself is split into 5 separate sections – Basic Approaches, Clinical Presentation, Body System and Multisystemic Disease, Anaesthesia Analgesia and Surgery, and Critical Care. Each section tries to cover the most common presentations, though sometimes such as with the section on dental disease it feels like it has been simplified too much to be useful.

Other sections are absolutely spot-on with clear, concise summaries, diseases listed by area and lists of useful drugs, routes and dosages. The flow charts within the book form quick and easy to follow protocols from common presentations such as Jaundice, Anaemia, Pyrexia through to the critical care sections which includes protocols for collapse, seizures and urinary obstruction. I especially find useful the section on Anaesthesia and Analgesia as these are two areas any vet student will struggle with and this section is especially well written with easy drug references.

Other than the misplaced chapter on dental disease the biggest problem that I have had with this book so far is that it does not contain anything on euthanasia which I feel is something that should have been included. In fact I only noticed this during a euthanasia when I wanted to check if there was any difference in dosage (studying abroad included instructions are written in Slovak) for a giant breed dog.

There have been a few pocket reference books for vets published recently, however from all the books I have had the pleasure of looking at this one would be my choice even though it is slightly larger at DL size.

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