Emerging Infectious Diseases: Trends and Issues

Article excerpt

Emerging Infectious Diseases:Trends and Issues edited by Felissa R. Lashley PhD, RN, FAAN, and Jerry D. Durham, PhD, RN, FAAN; New York: Springer Publishing, 2002; 496 pages, $58.95

Suitable for undergraduate and graduate students in nursing and other health professions, this up-to-date and readable book covers the 17 most prevalent infectious diseases. With its broad overview approach and inclusive but easy format, it can also be used as a quick reference by academics and clinicians who have a special interest in historical and current trends in infectious disease.

The book is divided into three parts, each containing several chapters. Among the contributors are nurses, physicians, and other health practitioners who have played a leading role in the field. The first part of the book establishes a foundation for the proper understanding of emerging and re-emerging infectious diseases in terms of their continuously evolving nature. Three chapters focus on the dynamic nature of infectious diseases, factors that contribute to their spread, the issue of microbial resistance, and the categorization of emerging diseases according to their infectious agents and modes of transmission. A chapter on antibiotic microbial resistance, which deals with trends, influencing factors, and recommendations for the future, is particularly timely.

Part 2 consists of 17 chapters covering specific diseases. Each chapter focuses on the history of the disease, past and current trends, issues relevant to spread and control, and, in several instances, the critical importance of detection and management. The use of diverse presentation styles - historic narratives, case studies, pure science - by the different contributors is especially well done, keeping the reading dynamic and interesting. The presentation of a wide range of infectious diseases, including drug-resistant microrganisms and diseases recently reported in the United States, such as West Nile Virus, makes this section especially valuable. …