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From The CriticsReviewer: Randy L Calisoff, MD (Rehabilitation Institute of Chicago)
Description: This book offers an algorithmic approach for practitioners in pain medicine who provide interventional spine care to patients. It is unique in that it not only describes how to do the procedures, it also includes some of the latest studies supporting the evidence for doing these procedures as well as information about possible complications.
Purpose: The purpose, according to the editor, is to provide high-yield diagnostic and therapeutic care in a responsible fashion. By providing an algorithmic approach to interventional spine care through discussions of diagnosis, treatment, discrimination of symptomatic from nonsymptomatic structures, it equips clinicians with the ability to help direct what diagnostic testing (imaging, electrical, or procedural) should ensue. The book also discusses the formulation of a proper diagnosis of a wide variety of conditions in pain medicine and to go over the proper techniques for interventional care, while also keeping in mind cost-effectiveness.
Audience: Written for practitioners, the book is suitable for those who see a variety of patients with diverse pain conditions and who also perform interventional spine procedures.
Features: The book covers a wide variety of pain topics, ranging from proper diagnosis of pain conditions to evaluation and treatment. Among the conditions covered are discogenic pain, facet pain, radiculopathy, and internal disc disruption. The book discusses proper imaging (if needed) for these conditions as well as the interventional care for these disorders. The figures are very useful, especially the Dallas Discogram scale, as are the tables showing the results of published investigations regarding treatment for TFESI's. Not only does this book present some of the latest research behind interventional therapy, it also provides practitioners with a discussion of some of the controversies surrounding some of the therapies such as disc stimulation. The review of pertinent anatomy is sound. Most importantly, the book makes a solid contribution to the discussion of the complications of interventional care, critical information for any practitioner to have a solid foundation in. Discussions of some of the molecular biology behind pain disorders including disc degeneration are valuable, and pictures are nicely employed in the book to match the discussion of a particular topic.
Assessment: This is a high quality book, not only because of its overall thoroughness, but also because it takes a functional approach to pain medicine. I particularly enjoyed the chapter, "Functional Restoration of Painful Lumbar Spinal Disorders," by Michael Geraci, Jr., and Stuart M. McGill, which discusses important concepts that practitioners should be aware of when dealing with patients with pain. Such topics include reducing the risk of injury, the cause of such injury, and the kinetic chain. This is superior to other books in the field. It successfully accomplishes its objectives and incorporates a functional restoration approach to painful disorders, which gives readers a 360-degree view of how to approach such patients.