Books for First Year Medical Students

Congratulations. You've been accepted to medical school. Now, it's time to think about how you will survive medical school. Here I will discuss good books to have for succeeding in your first year of medical school.

Buy books that you feel you need. Some students only buy Netter's Anatomy and Blumenfelds for Neurology. For some people, that is their way of saving money. But for most, it is just not enough. For students who do not feel that Netters is enough, you can also get Gray's Anatomy as well. In addition, the Color Atlas of Anatomy is great for studying for anatomy exams, especially if you don't feel like going to lab. Bates' Guide to Physical Examination, Boron's Medical Physiology, Katzung's Basic and Clinical Pharm, Wheater's Functional Histology, and Robbins Pathology are all great books to keep in your resource list.

Use these books to clarify and settle things in your mind. For those of you who don't have much money, you might want to consider getting older editions of Wheater's or Bates' or a physiology book.

If you volunteer in a clinic, particularly a low-tech one, it's worth buying something like a pocket guide to family medicine. I volunteered in a clinic for a year; found myself stranded without information on particular illnesses many times, before I finally saw another med student (from another school) come in with a few books like these. It seems ridiculous now to try to learn to practice medicine without any reference books! Something like the Manual of Family Practice (published by LWW) or the Mass General Pocket Medicine is fine.

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