Monday, November 11, 2013

Meet the (Virtual) Reference Books: The Gale Encyclopedia of Medicine

Meet the Reference Books introduces noteworthy encyclopedias, dictionaries, and other reference materials in Carmichael Library's print and digital collections. Blog posts are contributed by Reference Student Assistants.  The first round of books this semester comes from our Virtual Reference Shelf.  

This post is written by Jasmyn Walker, a sophomore biochemistry major.  Jasmyn introduces the Gale Encyclopedia of Medicine.  

If you are anything like me, at the first sign of pain you quickly type your symptoms into the WebMD search bar only to find that you are deathly ill with only months left to live (and that there happens to be a sale on Oreo’s at Wal-Mart). However, after hours of fretting over who will get all of your belongings, you realize that all you have is a common cold. (Don’t worry, it happens to the best of us!) The Gale Encyclopedia of Medicine is the holy grail for self-diagnosing doctors everywhere.

This encyclopedia includes medical disorders and concepts with an in-depth discussion of causes, symptoms, diagnosis, treatments, procedures, and other related topics. This book was published in 2006, so all the information is pretty up-to-date with modern medical information. While this encyclopedia is great for people who like to diagnose themselves, it is perfect for those with medical-related majors, such as Pre-Med, Pre-Pharmacy, or Pre-Dentistry.

I even picked up a few things myself. For example, the common cold is a viral infection of the upper respiratory system including the nose, throat, sinuses, Eustachian tubes, trachea, larynx, and bronchial tubes.  Luckily, most colds clear up on their own without complications. Nonetheless, the average person is expected to have up 50 colds in their lifetime!  This encyclopedia rocks and is more than helpful when it comes to your class assignments. But do yourself (and the rest of us) a favor and see a real doctor when you actually get sick.

-Jasmyn Walker

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