Description: This handbook provides an excellent review of the syndrome of opioid bowel dysfunction (OBD). To the best of my knowledge, this is the first handbook that comprehensively addresses this syndrome.
Purpose: In the preface, the editor-in-chief states that OBD is so severe that physicians sometimes limit opioid use, even when medically indicated, and that the book is written specifically to provide a reference for practitioners to enable them to rectify this situation.
Audience: All physicians who provide care to patients requiring opioids will benefit enormously from this handbook. The editor has created a unique resource that manages to merge the science with the clinical care while providing a format that is easily readable. Dr. Yuan is an internationally renowned expert in this area and has assembled an outstanding group of 15 international physicians, scientists, and physician-scientists to serve as the principal authors of this handbook.
Features: The book is clearly written and organized into three sections: fundamentals of opioid bowel dysfunction, clinical situations in which this syndrome occurs, and cutting edge present and "futuristic" approaches to the problem. Abundant references enable the reader to fully use primary sources.
Assessment: This handbook will be an invaluable reference for physicians who regularly prescribe opioids for pain management. Although much attention has been paid to some of the side effects of opioid use (respiratory depression, addiction potential, etc.), this book will be an invaluable reference for clinicians who provide care for cancer patients and others requiring chronic high dose opioid therapy.