By Richard L. Miller
Publish Year : 2002
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From School Library Journal
Grade 10 Up-An effective starting point for student research. Concise, clear articles give readers a handle on specific topics while pointing them to further sources for more in-depth information. Facts have been pulled together from numerous scientific reports and journals. The more than 130 substances included are both natural and pharmaceutical products, all associated with misuse and addiction. Listed by common name, the initial citation includes pronunciation, Chemical Abstracts Service Registry Number, formal and informal names, drug type, U.S. availability, and more. The accompanying article discusses uses, drawbacks, abuse factors, drug interactions, cancer risks, and effects on pregnancy, and concludes with a bibliography. The introduction and explanation of drug types will help readers make sense of these substances as chemical compounds with pharmaceutical effects. Miller notes that this subject is "an emotionally charged" one and focuses on scientific fact and consensus. While the subject index is adequate, the drug name index is extensive, listing many common and street names for substances.Joyce Adams Burner, Hillcrest Library, Prairie Village, KSCopyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc.
Miller, who has authored other books on drug-related topics, has produced a remarkably clear and informative work intended for a wide audience, "from a student doing a term paper to reporters preparing a story, from parents reading that story to a narcotics law enforcement officer needing extra information."
Preceding the A-Z entries is a section on drug types that defines five major categories of drugs (e.g., stimulants, steroids), with subclasses where necessary. General information for each type of drug is given in detail, and all the alphabetical entries refer back to this section for descriptions of broad characteristics. The alphabetical listing of drugs that follows lists only substances "which have been declared a public concern by government officials, medical caregivers, or news media." Each entry includes the pronunciation of the substance, the Chemical Abstracts Service Registry Number (a unique identifier for every chemical), formal name or names, informal ("street") names, the drug type, Federal Schedule Listing (which ranks drugs according to their potential for abuse), U.S. availability (e.g., prescription or illegal), and pregnancy category (based on the risk a drug poses to the fetus). Following this information, highly readable discussions cover uses, drawbacks, abuse factors, some drug interactions, cancer risk, pregnancy effects, and any additional information that seems pertinent. Both notes and reliable sources of additional scientific information are listed at the end of each of the entries.
Entries are appropriately weighted. Nutmeg, for example, is a bit over two pages, while Marijuana runs to a little over eight (including two pages of informal names). A comprehensive list of print and Internet sources is included at the end of the volume, as are an exhaustive and accurate drug name index and a subject index.
More general and accessible than the Drug Abuse Handbook (CRC, 1998), The Encyclopedia of Addictive Drugs is recommended for high-school, academic, and large public libraries. It covers more addictive drugs than Gale's Drugs and Controlled Substances: Information for Students [RBB Mr 15 03], which is intended primarily for the high-school level. RBBCopyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved
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