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From The CriticsReviewer: Mark R Hutchinson, MD (University of Illinois at Chicago College of Medicine)
Description: This DVD, the latest addition to the series Surgical Techniques in Orthopaedics, is a compilation dedicated to elbow arthroscopy that ranges from operating room setup to portal placement and the performance of specific techniques, along with a special section of pearls and pitfalls.
Purpose: "The goals, as outlined by Dr. Baker, include improving knowledge regarding superficial and arthroscopic anatomy about the elbow, update the understanding of the pros and cons of selected patient positions, and enabling the surgeon to not only establish safe portals for arthroscopic viewing, but also to perform specific arthroscopic techniques ranging from impingement to loose bodies. With the growing number of elbow surgeries and the trend toward arthroscopic and minimally invasive approaches, this DVD does a great job in helping a surgeon with basic arthroscopic skills perform common arthroscopic procedures about the elbow. The objectives are worthy and the DVD does a nice job in meeting those objectives. "
Audience: This is clearly intended for orthopedic surgeons or orthopedic surgery residents who wish to include elbow arthroscopy as part of their practice. Indeed, if I wanted to take a fellowship dedicated to elbow arthroscopy anywhere in the world, I would seek out either Champ Baker, Larry Field, Gary Poehling or David Althchek. These premier orthopedists and arthroscopists are the masters about the elbow.
Features: The DVD is packed with narrated video clips of positioning, anatomic landmarks, portal placement, and surgical procedures. There is no argument that it is impossible to learn advanced arthroscopic skills from a written description or even still pictures alone. You must see the procedure and practice it. This DVD allows the reviewer to dynamically visualize, from inside and out, every step of elbow arthroscopy from the perspective of key arthroscopic mentors. There is a little overlap as different mentors take the reviewer from start to finish through specific procedures. Each begins by defining anatomic landmarks and portal placement. However, this repetition is essential in emphasizing the fundamentals and basic requirements for a successful elbow arthroscopy.
Assessment: It has been said that a picture is worth a thousand words; however, in the case of learning arthroscopy, a video is worth three volumes of text. Dr. Baker should be commended on bringing together these key educators who have created a product that, in a single viewing, will make a potentially difficult technique accessible to thousands of orthopedic surgeons who have basic arthroscopic skills but have been reluctant to use this approach with the elbow. This is a great addition to the AAOS's excellent series on surgical techniques in orthopedics.