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Multimedia Medicine. Essentials in Gastroenterology I—Peptic Ulcer

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Multimedia Medicine. Essentials in Gastroenterology I—Peptic Ulcer. Harris A. Inflammatory Bowel Disease. Forbes A, Rowlands D. (CD-ROM; £95.00 plus VAT.) London: Royal Society of Medicine Press, 1998. ISBN 1-85315-336-2.

The first in the Multimedia Medicineseries of interactive CD-ROMs developed jointly by The Royal Society of Medicine and the Royal College of Physicians,Essentials in Gastroenterology I offers a fresh, innovative teaching tool which will be useful for medical students and general physicians alike. User-friendly and well-illustrated, it follows a case orientated approach in dealing with the two most common gastrointestinal conditions encountered in modern clinical practice.

The topics are covered by experts in the field, and the layout is accessible to the least computer literate. The learning objectives for each section are clearly outlined, and highlight clinical aspects, modalities of investigation, relevant imaging techniques and suitable treatment options. Several case reports are included in each section with self-assessment multiple choice questions. Subject material is cross-referenced and includes key papers.

Essentials in Gastroenterology does not pretend to cover the same depth of subject as a standard textbook but rather aims to provide the student with a succinct overview of material. Updated versions would perhaps benefit by covering subject matter in greater depth at low cost. Hardware requirements are not insignificant, but should be available on most computers acquired within the past two years: 486 DX 66Mhz IBM PC/compatible with 16 MB of RAM, running Microsoft Windows 3.1/Windows 95 or Windows NT, SVGA colour graphics card, a minimum of 13 MB hard disk space, quad speed CD-ROM drive (MPC compliant), and sound card. Not inexpensive, the multi-user licensing agreement will allow ready access toEssentials in Gastroenterology in most libraries. Although interactive CD-ROMs will never replace the standard textbook, they are a welcome addition for the modern student.