The Textbook of Medical Parasitology is well-aligned with the clinical approach prescribed by the new Competency-Based Medical Education (CBME) guidelines for undergraduate and postgraduate students of medicine. Parasites are individually dealt with according to the body systems they affect, viz. intestinal, blood, and tissue parasites, but are grouped according to their taxonomic statuses. Thus, the book has a clinical orientation without compromising on the conventional principles of medical parasitology. The book is also a handy guide for workers in the field and is aimed at equipping them with the specialised skills, scientific information and research tools that would enable them to understand parasitism as a biological phenomenon and its relevance to human disease.
The textbook has been organised into five broad sections, which are as follows:
• Section I deals with the general concepts and immunology of parasitic infections.
• Sections II and III deal with the detailed study of protozoa and helminths respectively. Chapters on individual parasites are arranged according to the organ systems they affect (intestine, blood, tissue, etc.) to enable the study of parasites in the context of these organ systems. Each chapter contains up-to-date information about the morphology, life cycle and pathogenesis of individual parasites and the clinical features, diagnosis, management and prevention of the diseases caused by them. Simple line diagrams of parasite morphology, colourful illustrations of life cycles and standard microphotographs for laboratory diagnosis have been provided for easy assimilation of the concepts. Important information has been emphasised in tables, and separate boxes for laboratory diagnosis and treatment have been provided as tools for a quick recap. The core chapters are equipped with clinical cases and learning goals as well as descriptive and multiple-choice questions to help students prepare for their examinations.
• Section IV deals with disease manifestations of infections of the major organ systems of the body (with special reference to parasites) in line with the new clinically-oriented medical curriculum. Readers can best use this section while recapitulating the subject as it provides a bird's eye view of the parasites, bacteria, fungi and viruses affecting the various organ systems of the body and the general mechanisms of the disease processes in these organs.
• Section V is aimed at introducing readers to the concepts of zoonotic infections and ‘One Health’; medical entomology, the knowledge of which is important in understanding vector-borne diseases; and control programmes for parasitic diseases.
The three annexures at the end of the book deal with the approach to the laboratory diagnosis, laboratory procedures and materials required for testing and the drug therapy regimes for various parasitic infections.
In terms of organisation, Textbook of Medical Parasitology is well-planned and succinct. The textual material is supported by clinical case studies, illustrations, photographs and descriptive and multiple-choice questions for key point revision and better preparation for the examinations. While the simplified approach to the explanation of concepts is sure to aid in the quick assimilation of knowledge and make this book enjoyable for undergraduate students of medicine, it is also a handy resource for postgraduate students of Medical Microbiology and even clinicians.
Dr Sumeeta Khurana is a professor in the Department of Medical Parasitology, Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research (PGIMER), Chandigarh. After completing her MBBS from Indira Gandhi Medical College, Shimla, she pursued her MD in Microbiology from All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), New Delhi. She is a Fellow of the Indian Academy of Tropical Parasitology and the International Medical Science Academy, and was a WHO Fellow at Karolinska Institute, Stockholm, Sweden. She is Joint Editor of the Journal of Tropical Parasitology and is on the editorial board of several other journals. She is also a member of various international and national scientific organisations. Dr Khurana has over two decades of teaching experience and has guided several MD and PhD students, undertaken many research projects on parasitic diseases and published over 100 research papers. She has a passion for teaching, gardening and music.
Dr Abhishek Mewara is an associate professor in the Department of Medical Parasitology, Postgraduate Institute of Medical Education and Research (PGIMER), Chandigarh. He has an MBBS degree from Jawahar Lal Nehru Medical College, Ajmer, and an MD in Microbiology from PGIMER, Chandigarh. He is a member of the National Academy of Medical Sciences, the Indian Academy of Tropical Parasitology and many other prestigious academic bodies. Dr Mewara has more than a decade of teaching experience. He has conducted several nationally and internationally funded research projects on parasites and has published nearly 50 papers. He enjoys music, yoga, reading and travelling.