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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: David J. Dries, MD (University of Minnesota Medical School)
Description: This is a guide to the acute management and outcomes of adult and pediatric patients sustaining traumatic brain injury.
Purpose: A summary from a neurosurgical and neuropsychology perspective is provided for clinicians encountering head-injured patients. Summaries are based on recent consensus statements.
Audience: Emergency physicians, anesthesiologists, and intensivists are an appropriate audience for this book, written by a multidisciplinary group of senior authors in the U.K.
Features: After describing the epidemiology and pathology of head injury, the book takes a chronologic approach to the management of patients with head injury of varying severity. Initial imaging, transport, intensive care management, and monitoring are discussed in detail. Important related topics include anesthesiology for emergency neurosurgery, brain death, and procedures for skull reconstruction. Acute pediatric head injury management is covered in a separate chapter. Concluding chapters cover administrative, legal and rehabilitation issues. Chapters are concise and make good use of line diagrams and texture of type to separate topics. The few photographs are black and white and reproduce with adequate quality. There is one set of color plates, but they are small and detail is difficult to see. Chapters have excellent reference lists with citations including primary literature and important consensus statements dating to within two years of publication.
Assessment: This is a well-written, quick read for a practitioner facing a patient with traumatic brain injury with varying degrees of severity. A particular strength is the discussion of monitoring and intensive care unit management. The authors are careful to cite recent consensus statements and use information from these sources.