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A to Z Pocket Pharmacopoeia

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Keeping it Old-School

In 2014 all the buzz is about medical information at your fingertips seems to focus on tweets and apps.  Some of the emergency medicine periodicals even have a monthly column on tweets and others on apps, but when is the last time you saw them do a pocket book review?  Yes, I mean one made of paper.  Many seasoned emergency physicians will tell you that they still use a few small pocketbooks rather than their smart phone when they need to look something up quickly.  For many of us there is just not time during a busy shift to consult a textbook or an internet article.  We need something quicker when we need to refresh our memory or double check something – something that takes about a minute: a one-minute consult.

SEE LISTS BELOW FOR ADVANTAGES OF APPS AND OF POCKETBOOKS AND FOR A LIST OF SOME OF THE POCKETBOOKS MANY OF YOUR COLLEAGUES ARE USING.

Advantages of Smartphone Apps:

  • Saves space: multiple “books” in one device
  • More current: most are updated more frequently than books
  • Speed (sometimes): word completion and hotlinks

Advantages of Pocketbooks:

  • Cost: usually less expensive than similar apps with no annual fee
  • Reliability: often better researched than apps
  • Always on: no battery, doesn’t brake when dropped
  • Layout: often better organized
  • Modifiable: easily annotated in the margins or with post-its
  • Speed: flip the page, easily bookmarked, no updates to upload

EM Books – General:

   qe41.png   

  • Tarascon Adult Emergency Medicine, $19.95: good charts and images, longest track record, BUT missing many topics and requires separate book for pediatrics
  • Quick Essentials: Emergency Medicine, $16.80: many more topics than other books including pediatrics and OB/GYN, succinct, good charts and images, BUT many abbreviations
  • Pocket Emergency Medicine, $59.99: durable, well organized, and succinct BUT expensive, a bit bulky and missing many topics

Pocket Pharmacopoeias & Antibiotic Guides:

   A to Z 3rd ed book cover   

  • Tarascon Pocket Pharmacopoeia, classic edition, $19.95: thorough, BUT no antibiotic guide and minimal side effect and contraindication data and is designed for internal medicine
  • A to Z Pocket Emergency Pharmacopoeia, $12.00: alphabetical format easy to use, each entry has side effects & contraindications PLUS contains an antibiotic guide and sections on sedation and drug toxicities and is designed for emergency medicine
  • The Sanford Guide to Antimicrobial Therapy, $19.99: thorough guide for antibiotics with much more antibiotic information than other pocketbooks, BUT does not include all the other classes of medications

 

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