The ""Complete"" of the subtitle is not an optimism -- this is the most extensive book about heart disease within memory, conservative in approach and sanguine in tone -- now that life expectancy has been increased while invalidism has been reduced following the attack. Two practicing cardiologists (one of whom had a heart attack -- a chapter here) contribute the hard facts along with some incidentals (the heart weighs less than a pound, is a hollow organ, and looks like a ripe eggplant) about how the organ works and -- when impeded -- what are the symptoms as well as diagnostic indications. They cover congenital defects (there are many types), rheumatic fever and after, syphilitic effects, ""stealthy"" hypertension, congestive heart failure, pregnancy, angina, the heart attack itself and the contributory factors beyond cholesterol, smoking, stress, etc. They discuss in detail various drug therapies, surgery (""long, complex and trying"") which at best is rehabilitative not curative, and append the American Heart Association's Fat-Controlled, Low-Cholesterol Meal Plan along with a glossary of terms. More than just functional -- substantially informative and specifically instructive.