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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Mark R Hutchinson, MD (University of Illinois at Chicago College of Medicine)
Description: This is the second edition of a wonderful, extensive book that updates the various concepts in treating difficult problems with the shoulder that challenge all of us who do surgeries on patients with shoulder problems. Certainly, over the last seven years since the first edition was published, our skills, techniques, and science of healing have advanced significantly making this second edition essential.
Purpose: The aspirations of the authors were to make a unique and useful reference for shoulder surgeons faced with complex revision problems to be used as the "go-to" reference for these difficult cases. These lofty goals could only be accomplished by the most respected experts in the field. Indeed, J. P. Warner, Joeseph Iannotti, and Evan Flatow are such experts with international reputations. Christian Gerber describes this as a revision of their initial "indispensable" book. Clearly, the authors and editors have accomplished their goals.
Audience: By design, this book is targeted at orthopedic surgeons who perform shoulder surgery, especially cases that are more complex and difficult. This in-depth text should never be restricted to such an elite population of surgeons. Many of us who perform a significant number of shoulder surgeries but would not be considered solely shoulder specialists would benefit from this book when we find ourselves in a difficult situation or with a particularly challenging patient. Residents will find this a great and current reference on how to address these challenging problems from different approaches. Dr. Gerber wisely notes in his introduction that "many streets lead to Rome," implying that these authors provide a perspective that has worked for them. I have seen all three of the editors work and they have exceptional skills that we should model.
Features: The book is broken down into the common challenges of shoulder surgeons: instability, cuff pathology, stiffness, trauma, and arthritis. Each category is then subcategorized into special areas authored by selected experts. The figures are wonderful and very helpful in understanding the surgical approaches. Perhaps the best aspect of the book is the fact that it brings us up-to-date regarding the cutting edge of techniques as of 2005. While many of the chapters offer the perspective of the specific author, the contributors are highly respected experts and should be models for decision making on our patients.
Assessment: I enjoyed this book tremendously. It is not just another shoulder text that reviews fundamentals and basics, but rather one that accepts the challenge of the most difficult aspects of shoulder surgery and addresses the challenges with the guidance of some of the most respected experts in the field. I found new pearls in every chapter that will change my practice.