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Yale J Biol Med. 2010 September; 83(3): 165–166.
Published online 2010 September.
PMCID: PMC2946134

Neuroanatomy Through Clinical Cases

Reviewed by Anthony Marfeo, MD

Hal Blumenfeld 
Neuroanatomy Through Clinical Cases.
2nd edition. 2010. Sinauer Associates Inc.: Sunderland, MA. ISBN: (Softcover) 978-0878930586. US $78.95 1006 p

The latest edition of Neuroanatomy Through Clinical Cases is a comprehensive introductory textbook. It is specifically aimed at medical students learning neuroanatomy, but residents in the neurosciences also have been known to find it a helpful reference. The book has two separate but integrated parts. The first few chapters and the first pages of later chapters are standard didactic text, which is well-written and concise. The second sections of most chapters include clinical case presentations intended to illustrate the key features of the neurological system being discussed.

One of the earlier chapters is dedicated to the neurological exam. The maneuvers are described in detail, with many accompanying pictures. The companion Web site has videos demonstrating and describing correct techniques as well. The procedures are not taught for purely rote memorization; basic science rationales are provided. Explanations of both normal and abnormal results are included in a comprehensive and clear manner.

Another notable early chapter provides a solid introduction to neuroimaging. The physics behind the subject are briefly explained, and the mechanisms for key modalities are reviewed. A plethora of images are used to identify key structures. The level of detail is definitely enough for a clinical medical student, and residents could find it useful as a refresher.

The clinical cases presented in the text include relevant physical and laboratory findings and often imaging. The tables included are great references, some ready to be copied and carried in a white coat. Occasionally, principles of treatment are included.

The improvements from the first edition include a more readable color scheme and page layout. There are some new cases, and the basic science content has been revised and updated. The companion Web site will be fully released in Fall 2010. The new edition is more completely integrated with the Web site, allowing for a more seamless use of resources.

Overall, this book is a great introduction to clinical neuroanatomy. It is a readable and clean-looking text, and the price is reasonable. The content is relevant to both pre-clinical and clinical students and can serve as a basic reference during residency.

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