Essential Examination, third edition

Step-by-step guides to clinical examination scenarios with practical tips and key facts for OSCEs

By Alasdair K.B. Ruthven

Spiral bound
Nov 2015 , 155 pp
ISBN 9781907904103
Price: £19.99, $34.99

Now in full colour throughout!

Over 25,000 copies sold!

From reviews:

"This is about the best OSCE preparation book available." Doody's, summer 2016

Essential Examination has been comprehensively revised and new sections added:

  • Neonatal - the 'baby check'
  • Female genitalia
  • Digital rectal examination
  • GALS screening
  • Foot and ankle
  • Elbow
  • Critically ill patient
  • Confirming death

The new edition, now in full colour, retains the unique format and approach of the original.

  • Clear, step-by-step guides to each examination, including useful things to say to the patient (or an examiner), detailed descriptions of special tests, etc.
  • In a separate column is a collection of key information: potential findings, differential diagnoses of clinical signs and practical tips.
  • On the following pages there are facts relating to that particular examination and, in many sections, there are also tips on how to present your findings succinctly - a skill which is crucial to master for exam success.

If you are learning how to examine patients, or preparing for an OSCE, then you need Essential Examination!

Amazon 5-star reviews:

“I rarely write a rave review but this one is warranted. This textbook is AMAZING. It helped me do really well in my third year OSCE.

“This book is by far the best purchase I have made at medical school.

“I love the fact that this book is really condensed - has everything that you need to know about each examination in a couple of pages. Highly recommended to all medical students out there!

“Must-have book for medical student. It describes the examinations in a clear systematic manner which is easy to remember. It includes aide memoires and tips for getting extra marks in OSCEs. Each examination is also concluded with notes on commonly asked questions by examiners. I have found this book to be a great help for OSCE revision.

Cardiovascular; Heart murmurs



Chronic renal failure / renal transplant

GALS screen; Hip; Knee; Foot and ankle; Shoulder; Elbow; Spine; Hands – general / musculoskeletal

Hands – neurological; Upper limb neurology; Lower limb neurology; Cranial nerves; Extrapyramidal neurology / tremor; Cerebellar function

Cushing’s syndrome; Acromegaly

Lower limb arterial system; Lower limb venous system

General lumps

Skin lesions

Groin hernia

Thyroid / neck lump / thyroid status


Ventral hernia

Intimate examinations
Male genitalia; Female genitalia; Digital rectal examination; Breast

Pregnant abdomen


The critically ill patient

Confirming death

Lymph nodes of the head and neck; Key differential diagnoses

"This book is buy far the best purchase I have made at medical school. Provides markschemes for all of the clinical examinations AND info that is useful when preparing for the viva style quiz at the end of long osce stations" Amazon reviewer

"I love this book and use it a lot. It contains a huge amount of relevant information in an accessible format." Amazon reviewer

"This is a valuable book, well formatted and brimming with hints and memory aids for what questions to ask at what time. This is about the best OSCE preparation book available."
Doody's Book Reviews

Spiral bound
Price: £19.99, $34.99

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ISBNs: 9781907904103 978-1-907904-10-3 Title: essential examination third edition