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From The CriticsReviewer: Suanne M Daves, MD (University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine)
Description: This is the much needed fourth edition of a textbook about the anesthetic management of patients with congenital cardiac anomalies. Since the last edition, published in 1998, in-depth revisions of all chapters bring the reader largely up-to-date in this rapidly evolving field.
Purpose: The editors planned a comprehensive and authoritative book on the pathophysiology and perioperative management of pediatric patients undergoing palliation and/or correction of congenital cardiac anomalies. They also endeavor to provide the reader with information for anesthetic management during noncardiac surgery in both the child and the adult with congenital heart disease. These are worthy objectives and the editors and authors largely accomplish them, although at a superficial level at times.
Audience: The book is intended to be of interest to anesthesiology trainees and attendings as well as pediatric cardiac surgeons, pediatric cardiologists, medical students, and nursing staff who care for these patients. The book's best audience, however, is likely to be the resident or fellow anesthesiologist with an interest in pediatric cardiac anesthesia.
Features: Seven sections cover historical aspects of the specialty; developmental issues; preoperative evaluation; management issues (bypass, organ preservation, and hemostatic management); anesthetic management of individual lesions; postoperative management; and practice management (quality care and teaching). The chapters on the individual lesions outline anatomy, pathophysiology, natural history, diagnostic features, anesthetic perioperative management, various surgical approaches, postoperative care, and long-term outcomes. Each of these chapters concludes with a one-page synopsis of important management points. Particularly handy are appendixes that provide a comprehensive quick reference guide to associated noncardiac congenital anomalies and their anesthetic considerations and a simple guide to antibiotic prophylaxis (also included in last edition).
Assessment: The rapidly evolving field of congenital cardiac disease warranted a revision of the third edition of this book. The fourth edition presents a nice overview of topics with complete and up-to-date reference lists. Experienced clinicians will appreciate the review and the opportunity to read the perspective of other practitioners in the field, but the content will seem somewhat superficial in certain areas. The anesthesia trainee can gain an overview of important management issues and use the reference lists to begin to delve more deeply into this complex topic.