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Doody's Review ServiceReviewer: Jeffrey L. Apfelbaum, MD (University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine)
Description: In this, the fourth edition of Stoelting's (and now Hillier's) Pharmacology and Physiology in Anesthetic Practice, the authors provide an extraordinarily up-to-date and comprehensive overview of virtually every aspect of pharmacology and human physiology as they relate to current anesthesia practice.
Purpose: The authors state that this edition is intended to continue to provide students, as well as practicing anesthesiologists, with an in-depth but concise presentation of the aspects of pharmacology and physiology that are relevant either directly or indirectly to the perioperative anesthetic management of patients. Further, the authors indicate that they proceeded with a new edition of this book to incorporate the new information that has become available since the third edition was published in 1999. The book accomplishes its objectives in an outstanding fashion.
Audience: The authors suggest that this book is written primarily for students as well as practicing anesthesiologists. It also serves as an extraordinarily valuable reference for physician trainees in the medical specialty of anesthesiology. The authors are internationally recognized as scholars in the medical specialty of anesthesiology.
Features: The 60 chapters are divided into two major sections — pharmacology (38 chapters) and physiology (22 chapters). The pharmacology section is extraordinarily diverse and deals with fundamental issues (e.g., pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics of injected and inhaled drugs), as well as the pharmacology of many medications commonly administered during the perioperative period (e.g., antihypertensives, anticholinergics, neuromuscular blocking agents, local anesthetics, anxiolytics, etc.). There are also chapters on dietary supplements and herbal remedies, as well as antiseptics and disinfectants. The second section of the book provides a comprehensive review of human physiology with particular emphasis on information of importance in perioperative clinical scenarios. The fourth edition also contains new chapters on thermal regulation and physiology of the newborn and elderly.
Assessment: This is an extraordinarily well-written and comprehensive book of outstanding quality; it fills a unique niche in that it is specifically targeted to provide a comprehensive review of pharmacology and physiology with a particular emphasis on the perioperative management of patients. It is an invaluable addition to the library of any student or practitioner of anesthesiology.