Steven R. Mohnssen. San Francisco, Calif: Robert D. Reed Publication; 2001. Softcover. 94 pages, $10.95.

The Intensive Care Unit is an exceptionally valuable reference book that lucidly puts into lay terms the nature and descriptions of most diseases and conditions requiring admissions to the intensive care unit. Small, lightweight and as easily wielded as a foreign-language translation manual, Dr Mohnssen’s work is a unique reference guide that explains to families and significant others of critically ill patients the entire experience in the intensive care unit.

A thorough glossary and index simplifies a great deal of the jargon used in the medical field, and follows the 11-section body that delves into such topics as nutrition, ventilators, and shock, as well as advance directives and all of the major body systems.

A particularly useful aspect of this book is the inclusion...

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