ACP medicine vs Harrison vs Cecil

Discussion in 'Internal Medicine and IM Subspecialties' started by Penquin-007, Mar 16, 2007.

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  1. Penquin-007

    Penquin-007 New Member

    May 20, 2006
    Which textbook would you recommend for medical student going into internal medicine residency in July?

    I know Uptodate is good, but sometimes it is too complex for what I need.

    Also do you think it is a good idea to buy the MKSAP booklets at the beggining of my residency?

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  3. googlee

    googlee 2+ Year Member

    Oct 18, 2006
  4. Bike on a Trek

    Bike on a Trek New Member 10+ Year Member

    Mar 12, 2006
    Don't buy anything until you see what on-line resources you have at your residency. You may already have some of these available.
  5. Medical123

    Medical123 Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    Dec 4, 2001
    The program that I Matched to will give us the MKSAP books during our second year. They said that they wait until the second year to do this because the books are updated every two years and they want us to have the most recent editions before we take the boards.

    I agree with waiting until you find out what your residency program is going to provide for you at no cost. After that, talk to the residents in your program and find out what texts and stuff that they recommend.
  6. Adcadet

    Adcadet Long way from Gate 27 10+ Year Member

    In the past I did some comparisons between Harrison's, Cecil's, and ACP Medicine. For the most part they all cover the same information. They're all solid texts and include all the major topics that a future internist needs to know. In terms of level of content, I think Harrison's includes more basic science and has more chapters for the beginner. When I assembled the list of chapters I wanted to cover for my first medicine rotation, I remember Harrison's having a number of good chapters for that (Harrison's had "Approach to the patient with cancer" but Cecil's and ACP Medicine doesn't have similar "internal medicine for idiots" chapters). ACP Medicine seemed to be at the highest level and intended more for those who have a clue - senior residents and practicing physicians I suppose. The ACP Medicine chapters are updated more frequently, with each chapter noting the month and year of last revision - something that's really nice if you are concerned about fast moving topics and the online edition then is usually a bit more up to date then the other print book (although Harrison's does a nice job posting updates). Cecil's is somewhere in the middle - they cover the basic science, but not as in-depth as Harrison's.

    The biggest differences IMO are not in content, but in the packaging - what can you get online at your particular institution, is online access a pain in the butt to use or really easy and convenient, is the font used easy for you to read, and the quality and number of graphics. Personally, I think Harrison's has the nicest looking layout, text, and graphics. Online access through my school is also reasonably fast and it will give me a whole chapter at a time if I want, making it easier to print a chapter. My copy of Cecil's has slightly shiny pages, which reflects my desklamp and give me a headache faster. My online access to Cecil's only gives me one small chapter section at a time and is relatively slow, so reading a chapter online is a lot of work. I have access to ACP Medicine through school, and use it on occasion, but I prefer to read more of the "intro" chapters that Harrison's has. So overall I prefer Harrison's (though not for huge reasons), and so as to minimize redundancy that's where I usually do my reading.

    I you register with Merck Medicus, you get access to many books online. You might feel dirty given the association with Big Pharma, but you do get access to many books, including:
    * Cecil Textbook of Medicine
    * Ferri's Clinical Advisor
    * Harrison's Online
    * Hospital Medicine
    * The Merck Manual of Geriatrics 3rd ed.
    * Merck Manual, Professional Edition
    * ICU Book
    * Kelley's Textbook of Internal Medicine
    * Patterson's Allergic Diseases
    * Principles and Practice of Endocrinology and Metabolism
    * Raj: Practical Management of Pain
    * Textbook of Cardiovascular Medicine

    They also now give you access to Harrison's Practice, which is an amazing resource in my opinion. Want a differential for abdominal pain? Want to know what tests you should order? Want some pearls that you might not think of? Want a link to the full text chapter "approach to the patient with abdominal pain" out of Harrison's? Harrison's Practice, available through Merck Medicus will set you up, for free. This is an amazing resource, IMO.

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