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Contraception Today (8th edn)
  1. Shamela de Silva
  1. Consultant in Genitourinary Medicine and HIV, West Middlesex Hospital, London, UK;

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John Guillebaud. Boca Raton, FL, USA: CRC Press, 2016. ISBN-13: 978-1-498-71460-0. Price: £38.99. Pages: 187 (paperback)

This pocket book, while requiring the use of larger pockets over the years, continues to be in a format that is easy to read, engaging and portable.

The main text is conversational, and practical points are clearly presented as bullet point lists and with pathways given as flow diagrams, which considerably aid the retention of information. There are also photographs of many of the devices, which will be helpful for clinicians not routinely using them. The main criticism I have about the book's presentation is the choice of colour for some of text in boxes: black text on a coloured background reduces contrast, and can be a struggle for ageing eyes to read!

A general introduction is followed by a series of comprehensive chapters addressing practical aspects of contraception. There is an excellent chapter on combined hormonal contraceptive methods; potential side effects and their clinical implications. Comparative risks are beautifully and clearly presented, and there is a very useful checklist for the management of abnormal bleeding. Subsequent chapters such as progestogen-only oral contraception and injectable methods are sufficiently short, and laid out in such a way that they can be readily used to refresh for examinations and clinical practice. The chapter on intrauterine contraception is also particularly useful, covering topics such its use as emergency contraception (EC), difficult fittings, lost threads, and a flow chart for their management. A clear explanation of the unusual effects of ulipristal acetate is laid out in a straightforward chapter on EC. There are then short chapters on barrier methods, special considerations, and practical advice regarding choices for older women. The book ends with useful websites and guidance for off-label prescribing.

I would recommend this book as a general primer for students and a useful update for clinicians involved in the delivery of contraception.

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  • Competing interests None declared.

  • Provenance and peer review Commissioned; internally peer reviewed.

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