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From The CriticsReviewer: Jessica K Smith, MD (University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics)
Description: This detailed manual provides both information about, as well as hands-on instruction for, all of the energy sources currently used in surgery and invasive procedures. It is especially pertinent for those in surgical teaching positions, because surgery residents typically have not had such instruction before they use these devices in the operating room.
Purpose: "The authors' objectives are to provide education about the various surgical energy sources currently in use. Designed for practicing surgeons, the manual teaches the technology behind each device, its proper applications, and safety considerations. For teaching purposes, it also provides instruction for hands-on demonstrations of the various devices. The author's objectives are certainly worthy ones. An understanding of the physics behind the devices means we can use them with increased safety and efficacy. I was not taught this as a surgical resident, and I think the author's aim that trainees should be educated about energy sources before using them is a valid one. This book does meet the above described objectives. "
Audience: Although it is written for practicing surgeons, this book also is suitable for residents and medical students in surgery, as well as operating room nurses.
Features: The book is aptly divided into two parts, the first of which has chapters covering each of the commonly used surgical energy sources. Included in each chapter is a detailed description of the electromechanics involved in the device, followed by its proper application and any tips and safety concerns. Subsequent chapters cover special patient populations, followed by a very important chapter dealing with adverse events related to surgical energy devices. The second part serves as a laboratory manual to create hands-on labs for trainees to demonstrate the use of the various devices. This is something that could be useful as part of a surgical training curriculum. The details of the electromechanics, application, and safety of each device are not currently taught in surgical training, but should be. This is also the best part of the book — it significantly enhances its applicability as an information and instruction manual for surgeons and surgical trainees. The use of color diagrams and photographs, especially in the hands-on demonstrations, is a uniquely attractive feature. The only shortcoming is the overuse of mathematical and physics equations at some points in the book. These would not be critical for most readers.
Assessment: As far as I know, no similar compilation or overview of surgical energy devices exists. This is an extremely useful and relevant book, especially as the number of available devices is steadily increasing. Surgeons will need to know the function, application, and safety profile of the devices they choose to use, as one may have advantages over another to accomplish a particular task.