Aniello Iannuzzi, Visiting Medical Officer, Coonabarabran Hospital, NSW

Therapeutic Guidelines: Gastrointestinal highlights that this series is about therapeutic guidelines, rather than just medication guidelines. It is suitable for all health professionals. Students and junior clinicians will find more than they need to pass exams and survive on the wards. The succinct and up-to-date information in this book will appeal to senior clinicians.

Many of the therapies described in this guide are non-prescription, making it a useful resource for pharmacists and dietitians. It is a wake-up call for medical practitioners, reminding us that prescribing drugs is not the only way to solve clinical problems.

Basic day-to-day problems are dealt with comprehensively, namely constipation, nausea, vomiting and diarrhoea. All clinicians, irrespective of their specialties, will find useful information in these chapters.

The first section, 'Getting to know your drugs', is a 25-page pharmacology revision of all the gastrointestinal drugs of importance. The only oversight was dexamethasone, which is subsequently referred to a lot in the nausea and vomiting chapter.

The other chapters deal with all the important non-surgical conditions of the gastrointestinal tract. These include viral hepatitis, Helicobacter pylori, diverticular disease, irritable bowel syndrome, as well as disorders of vitamin and mineral metabolism. There are also useful sections dealing with enteral nutrition and stoma management. This book contains many practical tables as well as appendices relating to pregnancy, ostomy appliances and support groups.

It is a handy pocket-sized book which is also available in an electronic format with the other guidelines in the series. I strongly recommend this book to all clinicians.

Aniello Iannuzzi

Visiting Medical Officer, Coonabarabran Hospital, NSW