1. Edinger, Germaine M. DNP, MS, APRN, BC, CNS

Article Content

David J. Kupfer, Michelle S. Horner, David A. Brent, David A. Lewis, Charles F. Reynolds, Michael E. Thase, and Michael J. Travis. New York: Oxford University Press, 2008. $39.95. ISBN 978-0-19-530884-6. 955 pp.


The Oxford American Handbook of Psychiatry is a medical text to provide hands-on advice for managing psychiatric conditions. Updated from the Oxford Handbook of Psychiatry, the text reflects American perspectives, procedures, and practice. The text is recommended as a quick reference for students and residents as well as experienced clinicians and allied health professionals.


The purpose of the book is to provide practical guidelines to assess and manage psychiatric conditions. General adult psychiatry and specialties, including child and adolescent, geriatric, forensic, consult-liaison, developmental disabilities, reproductive psychiatry, substance abuse, and psychotherapy, are covered.


The content is well organized, succicent, and comprehensive. The table of content is directive and helpful. The chapter on psychiatric assessment includes direct questions to assess specific areas. The format is helpful for clinicians building their clinical interview techniques. The color-coded page runners make the psychiatric symptom dictionary identifiable and easy to use. The soft flexi-covered book and pocket size make the text physically attractive. Attached bookmark ribbons allow the user to find page-marked locations easily.


A chapter is dedicated to each diagnostic category and specialty practices. Additional chapters include cross-cultural psychiatry issues, therapeutic issues, and psychiatric emergencies. Integrative medicine and psychiatric practices is also included. A key chapter is the DSM-IV-TR/ICD-10 codes chapter, which is helpful to enhance one's coding practice.


The text focus is medical practice and the psychopharmacology content is limited. However, the use of "pearls" related to key information for medication use and patient education is a directive focus. The "Integrative Medicine" chapter is limited but contains a nice overview of integrated mind-body-spirit therapies.


The graduate nursing student and practicing psychiatric clinicians will find the pocket text helpful to enhancing their psychiatric clinical practice. The text is especially helpful for advanced practice nursing students who are expanding their practice into the diagnostic arena.