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First Aid for the USMLE Step 1 2012 (First Aid USMLE) 22nd Edition

3.6 out of 5 stars 198 customer reviews
ISBN-13: 978-0071776363
ISBN-10: 0071776362
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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Tao Le, MD, MHS, is Assistant Clinical Professor of Pediatrics in the Division of Allergy and Immunology at the University of Louisville. He is also affiliated with the Division of Allergy and Immunology at The Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine.

Vikas Bhushan, MD practices diagnostic radiology from his home-base in Los Angeles, California.
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Product Details

  • Series: First Aid USMLE
  • Paperback: 680 pages
  • Publisher: McGraw-Hill Medical; 22 edition (December 19, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0071776362
  • ISBN-13: 978-0071776363
  • Product Dimensions: 8.2 x 1.1 x 11 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 3.1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (198 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #197,080 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
It is incomprehensible that a review book that simply summarizes other books, that changes so very little of its material every year, can have SO many mistakes. Seriously, do a search for First Aid Errata and you'll see the pdf with all the errors. It's put out by the same folks; they offer $10 for writing in with an error. It's 10 pages long, about 20 errors listed per page, just for the 2012 edition. I'm no math whiz, but that's like 2 grand worth of payouts. How about you pay the same for someone to actually READ the book before you publish it? There was a similarly long errata pdf last year for the 2011, so either they're not correcting old errors or they're managing to screw up whole new things. Who is editing these things? I mean, it's pretty much the same exact book every year!

Yes, they've gone to color. And that is appreciated. But giving someone stars for including color diagrams is, well, lame. This is 2012. Color has been around in print for some time now. They've even got it in movies, I hear.

And they even managed to screw up the colors! Green for inhibitory, red for stimulatory. Really? Someone's been taking too much Ethambutol.

First Aid is like the fat, lazy General Motors of the 70's. Consider themselves the Standard of the World, too complacent to fix their problems, much less improve their product (with the exception of this year's big move to color - Now you're on the trolley!). And everyone uses them because that's what the old folks used.

Where are you, Japanese First Aid?

EDIT/UPDATE: Holy cow. The Errata has errata. Seriously. They have updated the long list of mistakes to acknowledge that the previous list of mistakes has mistaken mistakes. There...there are no words...
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
What was formerly a useful board review book has been crippled by the amount of idiotic errors it contains. If you spend hundreds of hours studying for a test, you would like your review book to be a trustworthy source of information. Because of the amount wrong information in first aid, I now second guess everything I don't understand in the book and have to spend time going to secondary sources to verify.

Factual errors are everywhere, whole pictures are mislabeled, formatting problems are common, and none of the editors know how to spell. The supplemental errata they provide is currently 14 pages (and counting) and contains over 250 corrections. Despite their corrections, I've still found errors. Even the errata itself contains errors. They've released subsequent erratas correcting the errors in the previous errata. Either the people compiling the book are idiots or just completely careless because I don't know how else you make some of these errors without trying to. For instance, the 2011 first aid has an error for the drug Clindamycin. It is corrected in the 2011 Errata. The error is still there in the 2012 edition (208 - inhibits translocation not peptidyltransfer). Apparently, the editors don't even check their own errata when producing the new book. Other errors show no understanding of the basic concepts being presented. For example, the picture of the porto-systemic anastomoses (pg 341) has the portal vein running to the IVC (instead of the liver) and all the arrows depicting blood flow are facing the wrong direction. The drawing is right in the 2010 version, so it appears whoever is responsible for the updated drawing had very little understanding of the anatomy they were trying to depict.
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Format: Paperback
I have owned and used both 2010 and 2011 First Aid. This edition adds color headings, puts images with text, and spreads out the formatting. Overall, this is a great change.

However, because they so drastically changed the formatting, and seem to have little editorial oversight, they managed to omit entire subsections. While some sections, such as "Reportable Disease" may be ommitted for being too low yield, others such as the drug Hexamethonium, the Measures to Treat Risk Factors, etc., are missing entirely. Many of these items are listed in the index (perhaps even BOLDED), but lo and behold they are missing on the actual pages. I have finished studying about 20% of the book to a high level, and have found 10+ instances of this.

Not really a problem if you have a 2010/11, or use Doctors in Training/Kaplan as you can just annotate in. But, I think this is just such a sloppy way to make a book (combined with the thin, smeary paper everyone else has mentioned), that I lower it from 5 to 3 stars. Having various errata is fine; entire deletions are not.

Not a deal-breaker, and I would buy it over 2010/11, but just make sure you annotate b/c this book is just straight up missing stuff it says it contains.
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Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Read all the other reviews that mention how many corrections there are in this book. It's just unbelievable how they can even print this book when it's the same mistakes year after year. First Aid is a disgrace and the fact that they are so complacent and just plain lazy when it comes to something as important as the USMLE should be criminal. What really pisses me off is that they're well aware of how poor their text is, but they just don't care as long as they're still making money. The authors should be ashamed, I don't have any respect for any of them.

I will make sure to tell as many people as possible about how terrible this book is.
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