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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Bruce E Jarrell, MD (University of Maryland School of Medicine)
Description: This is the 1st edition of a new text that covers the broad topic of surgery as seen at a beginning level of trainee.
Purpose: The purpose of this text is to present the large body of knowledge needed to be mastered by students on a surgical rotation.
Audience: This text is intended primarily for medical students on a clerkship or junior residents.
Features: There are 17 sections divided into 67 chapters for a total of 792 pages. The chapters cover the area of general surgery, with limited coverage of pediatric surgery, urology, plastic surgery, head and neck surgery, neurosurgery and orthopedic surgery. In addition, there are special chapters on anesthesiology, dermatology and minimal access surgery. Each chapter has many radiographs and photographs of surgical specimens. There are numerous surgical diagrams, staging tables and other very useful tables. Chapters have full color art work of associated anatomy and related important concepts. Each chapter has highlighted sections that include pearls for a student to know while in the operating room as well as on rounds. Each chapter discusses the essentials of a particular topic from basic science knowledge to clinical knowledge. There is a broad discussion of the diagnostic and therapeutic options. In addition, there is a free on-line access to a web site for student consultation. This can be downloaded to hand-held devices. Additionally, the tool allows the student to search across numerous texts that are published by Elsevier but not part of this text. Included are videos of procedures and other media presentations.
Assessment: Overall, this was well-written and easy to read. The book is designed from a disease based point-of-view rather than a problem-based point-of-view. Thus, it lends itself more easily to learning about diseases, but has the limitation that it is more difficult to learn about general problems such as GI bleed. The granularity of the content is appropriate for medical students and junior residents. The diagrams are outstanding, and there are many excellent pictures. The tables are clear and helpful. The pearls alone make for an excellent quick reference to be used by a student in preparation for rounds or the operating room. They are well thought out and on-target for the needed knowledge. The web site is more than just an electronic copy of the book. It is an educational locus for other published products from Elsevier and is rich in content. In addition, this book also had a chapter addressing professionalism, behavior and dress as a clinical clerk. This added significantly to its value. Overall, this is a very nice edition to the medical student education literature, and I am sure it will be used by students very successfully.