This second edition provides a thoroughly updated, symptoms-based guide to the assessment, diagnosis, and management of neurological disorders in infancy.
The purpose of this book is to provide strong guidance for practicing pediatric neurologists ranging from important history taking points and skillful neurological examination to very helpful information in advanced neurophysiological and genetic testing and cranial imaging domains.
Not only is this a must-have book for pediatric neurology trainees and junior faculty interested in understanding and managing neurological disorders in infancy, but also for pediatric neurologists subspecializing in epileptology, sleep disorders, and neuromuscular disorders. Some chapters can be immensely helpful to pediatric geneticists, neonatologists, and developmental-behavioral pediatricians.
The major highlight and uniqueness of this book lies in each chapter, which is preceded by a concise summary and subdivided into key messages, common errors, and when to worry. In this way, the reader has a birds-eye view of the content, points of interest, the most important clinical signs and symptoms, and pitfalls to avoid. The first section of principles of child neurology in infancy covers principles of neurological and neurodevelopmental assessment, investigations, treatment, and evidence-based medicine, and basic principles of health, such as promoting child development and the prevention of neurological diseases. The second section of the textbook is symptom-based and focused on the major disorders in infancy including birth asphyxia, febrile and non-febrile encephalopathies, seizures and non-epileptic proximal disorders of infancy, microcephaly, macrocephaly, floppy infant, cerebral palsy, sleep disorders, and stroke.
This book is outstanding and, of course, one would expect nothing less when such a publication has as its lead editor professor Dr. Colin Kennedy who has contributed to the training of a generation of young pediatric neurologists from all the countries of Europe and beyond. Whether you are a pediatric neurologist, a neurology subspecialist, or a trainee, and whether you work in an acute or outpatient setting, you will find this book invaluable.
Yash Shah, MD MPH (Northwell Health)
www.MedInfoNow.com Doody's Publisher's Club
The first edition of this practical guide was published in 2012 and became the basis of a teaching series for the European Pediatric Neurology Society. Principles and Practice of Child Neurology in Infancy may not have seeped into the consciousness of North America yet, but that is likely to change with the second edition. It is a thoughtfully constructed title and fills an important niche in pediatric neurology.
There are 29 multi-authored chapters organized into two main sections: the first being a general approach and the second devoted to clinical topics. The general approach section covers a wide breadth, including inter-professional working, evidence-based medicine, neonatal and infant neurological examinations, vaccination, imaging, neurophysiology, biochemical testing, genetic testing, drug treatments, and nonpharmacological approaches. The clinical topics begin with birth asphyxia and acute newborn infant encephalopathy, and then cover areas pertinent to neonates (vs infants). There is a neonatal seizure chapter and later a post-neonatal seizure chapter, as well as a separate discussion of non-epileptic paroxysmal disorders in infancy. There are individual chapters on microcephaly (including congenital infections) and macrocephaly (including hydrocephalus and brain tumors). Chapters more focused on the post-neonatal period include the hypotonic infant, infant sleep and behavior, cerebral palsy, movement disorders, and developmental regression.
Each chapter begins with highlighted, boxed sections covering ‘Key messages’, ‘Common errors’, and ‘When to worry’, and ends with key references followed by resources. This consistent structure sets a user-friendly tone and provides immediacy to what the clinician (novice and seasoned) really needs to know.
The first chapter, authored by Colin Kennedy (editor of the book), implores us to use terms with precision and exercise our responsibility to encourage standard care and discourage unproven, potentially harmful measures.
The chapter on inter-professional care covers childhood (and parental) depression and living with a disability, so pertinent in this domain of pediatric medicine. Andrew Lux’s tour-de-force in epidemiology is essential reading for anyone writing, or reviewing, in the peer-reviewed literature. The chapter on promoting child development develops into a superb discussion of neurodiversity and the right to ‘live happily ever after’, drawing from sources such as the United Nations and the World Health Organization. The chapters on the neonatal examination, infant developmental and neurological evaluations, and vaccination/disease prevention are well done and deserve a wide audience of pediatricians and neurodevelopmental specialists. The discussions on classical diagnostic tests (imaging, electroencephalography, laboratory medicine) are lucid introductions with advanced information as well. The genetic testing portion is timely and paramount, and perhaps could even include the standard terminology of gene variants in a future rendition. The discussion on drug treatments has comprehensive and practical information on vitamin treatments in neonates. The chapter on nonpharmacological treatment – a topic often unseen in standard child neurology literature – is a balanced and welcome addition.
The second section of the book, as noted above, covers the major clinical topics of neonatal/infantile neurology. Each chapter is rich in clinical detail plus some surprises, e.g. a primer on herniation syndromes in the chapter on acute neurological illness with fever. While there are some inconsistencies (e.g. references range from none to 30+), each chapter maintains the same organizational pattern of ‘Key messages’, ‘Common errors’, and ‘When to worry’. What could be better?
Mac Keith Press, publisher of Principles and Practice of Child Neurology in Infancy, now also offers an online interactive course based on the volume’s contents. This carefully edited book, spanning the neonatal and infantile periods, is sure to enter the pantheon of authoritative works in pediatric neurology and become an educational treasure for the foreseeable future.
Phillip L Pearl
Department of Neurology, Boston Children’s Hospital, Harvard Medical School,
Boston, MA, USA