Like any encyclopedia treatment of child health procedures which involve parents, some entries are more firm and thorough than others. The authors take a forthright stand, for example, on the now controversial matter of infant feeding; they favor delayed introduction of solids and do not approve of non-fat milk in the early weeks. On the other hand, in spite of recent studies indicating a very real physiological basis for most severe menstrual cramps, there's an old-fashioned bias. The chapters discussing pediatric practice and procedures, diet, emotional problems, home care, first aid; hospital stays and accident prevention are sound and clearly stated. But then there's that listing of childhood diseases and conditions, exhaustively cross-referenced. The lumping of common and uncommon maladies with emergency treatment can cause trouble. For example, a description of choking (""a sudden involuntary closing off of the upper airway,"" etc.) has the entry at the end of the paragraph, ""Emergency care is discussed under choking and swallowing foreign objects."" So on to that entry where the terrified parent may read: ""If your child is choking on an object that he or she [sic] has swallowed and you can see it and easily grasp it from his or her [sic] mouth--yes yes!--do so."" Not the best and certainly not the worst of health encyclopedias--but more valuable for informed prevention than for hurried remedies.