Book Review: The Chest X-Ray: A Survival Guide

Chest x-ray interpretation is undoubtedly one of the most important technical skills in medicine (perhaps only fourth after history-taking, physical examination and electrocardiogram interpretations).

The Chest X-Ray: A Survival Guide (2008) by Gerald de Lacey , Simon Morley and Laurence Berman is probably the best book about chest radiography in existence. There are several features that make it so. First, the book is organized on the basis of several convergent approaches. For example, some sections of the book address anatomical problems: lobar collapse, pleural abnormalities and the like. Other sections focus on clinical problems such as dyspnea, cough and chest pain. Yet other sections focus on visual problems: nodules, white outs, “one lung looks blacker,” etc. These different approaches are cross-referenced within the book, thereby repeating and reinforcing important concepts.

The Chest X-Ray A Survival Guide

The anatomical drawings are excellent and help the readers see the relevant pathology and understanding the underlying anatomy. The book is rather small so one can use it as a reference.

The book is on top of my list of best medical books of all time  and is part of the radiology curriculum for self-guided learners. I recommend it very highly to medical students, residents and even seasoned clinicians.

You can preview the book free here.