The Little Book of Medical Breakthroughs
by Dr Naomi Craft ( New Holland, pb, £7.99 )
Do you know what the first X-ray photograph showed? Or why the cardiac pacemaker was initially viewed with suspicion? The Little Book of Medical Breakthroughs
answers these and many other questions, putting the medical technologies we now take for granted into historical context.
This compact book, illustrated with black and white photos and diagrams, tells the stories of 100 key innovations in healthcare – from the first glass eyes (in the 16th century) to the face transplant in France in 2005. Over half of the entries relate to medical technologies. Each entry explains the scientific basis and clinical importance of a particular innovation, and puts it in historical context. The sequence allows us to see how healthcare has steadily become more specialised and technically sophisticated, while its social application has become universal.
The book allows you to trace developments within various therapy areas. For example, milestones in cardiac treatment noted here include the ECG, the defibrillator, the pacemaker, the artificial heart valve, angioplasty, bypass grafting, the heart transplant and the coronary arterial stent. The evolution of diagnostic imaging is followed from X-rays and mammography to ultrasound and foetal monitoring, and on to CT, PET and MRI scans.
Inevitably, these brief accounts do not tell the whole story. For example, the omission of Rosalind Franklin’s contribution to the discovery of the structure of DNA perpetuates a well-documented injustice. But this isn’t a book for historians. It’s a scrapbook of great moments in medical history: a condensed record of how medical science has transformed our lives. For anyone working in the healthcare industry, it offers both perspective and inspiration.
|On Target special book offer |
|Wiley is offering a free copy of The Little Book of Medical Breakthroughs to the first 3 On Target readers who answer this question correctly: In which 1997 film did a difficult transplant enable an undercover agent to infiltrate a criminal organisation? Send your answer to: email@example.com.. |
|Why Women Mean Business |
by Avivah Wittenberg -Cox & Alison Maitland ( Wiley, hb, £16.99 )
This book argues that the business world needs to wake up and respond to the new economic revolution being driven by ‘women’s growing power and potential’.
My initial fear was that this would be another of those outdated tirades against the ‘glass ceiling’ that generally serve only to isolate women further. However, I was pleased to find that the book starts by pointing out how the roles of women in business have changed, and that they now have equal purchasing power and comparable roles, salaries and ambitions to men.
But despite all this progress, women are still not equally represented in top jobs – and this is the main issue that the book tackles. It suggests we need an approach that sees women as a solution rather than a problem, and treats them as ‘full partners in leadership’. The authors make the interesting point that our ideas of traditional leadership roles are masculine, forcing women to adopt an aggressive style in order to succeed.
Unlike many books that look at gender issues, Why Women Mean Business offers a solution: an alternative way of looking at gender and a step-by-step guide for businesses on implementing an equality initiative. It also looks at the need for companies to have a culture and facilities in place that allow parents (whether female or male) to balance family and career.
The book is easy to read and widely researched, with lots of facts, opinions from business leaders and case studies. If you are the MD of a company, I would say this book is a must-read. However, I would recommend it to anyone in business – and particularly managers – as it provides a new and interesting take on equality issues and proves that gender imbalance still exists in the business world.
Diana Spencer is an Assistant Editor at Health Sector Publishing.
|On Target special offer winners: free copies of I Hate Presentations by James Caplin were won by Dawn Allinson, Steve Neufville and Sue Baker. In all, 9 correct answers were received. Will it be you next time? |