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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Jeffrey S. Rosenthal, MD (Bridgeport Hospital)
Description: Burn reconstruction requires a team effort to mend severely injured individuals. Dr. McCauley and his contributors offer the reader the information necessary to accomplish the Herculean task of rehabilitating a burn patient.
Purpose: The author wishes to address the reconstructive problems associated with burn treatment by reviewing the pertinent anatomy and the reconstructive ladder of techniques available for this purpose. What should be in the forefront of the clinician's mind is that a functioning human requires more than salvage to produce salvation. The process of rehabilitation must consider the final aesthetic results to enable re-entry into society as a functioning and productive human being.
Audience: The author is from a premier burn center and his writing associates have been chosen for their expertise in selective areas of burn reconstruction. Residents in plastic and general surgery, medical students who wish to obtain a better insight, and physicians who routinely treat or wish to treat the burn injured will benefit from this book.
Features: The task of assembling a single book on burn care is daunting and will become more so as the field continues to expand commensurate with the enormous amount of information available. Thus, this book cannot stand alone but is a resource. The 39 chapters present an overall review of the principles of burn care, followed by a systematic approach to the problems and treatment of burns of the face, head, neck, body, and extremities. Black-and-white photos of the burn patients and subsequent reconstructive endeavors adorn many of the chapters, allowing the reader a visual connection to the written word. Issues centered upon whether to close a burn with a graft or take advantage of a flap technique are discussed along with the pertinent historical background, surgical techniques, and plans to optimize the end aesthetic appearance of each patient. Each chapter commences with a clear-cut truncated index to allow the reader a glimpse of the topics to come.
Assessment: The treatment of burn patients requires the restoration of the physical attributes that we associate with being and looking human. Dr. McCauley's book goes a long way toward supplying the reader with this information.