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Basic Perioperative Transesophageal Echocardiography: A Multimedia Review.

Basic Perioperative Transesophageal Echocardiography: A Multimedia Review. R. M. Savage, S. Aronson. Philadelphia: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, 2013; ISBN 978-1-6054-7247-8; pp. 286; $125.99.

In a soft paperback at just under 300 pages and with an accompanying DVD, this book is aimed at perioperative physicians looking for a basic understanding of transoesophageal echocardiography (TOE).

The book is written entirely in point form, with each chapter starting out with 'Key Points' followed by an introduction, minimal expansion and finishing with multiple choice questions. Unfortunately, in point form the book rarely adequately explains or explores echocardiography concepts which would suit a novice. Several chapters have no references. Many of the figures look to have been copied and pasted from a previous PowerPoint presentation. The chapter on the mitral vane for example, is just three pages long, with the use of terms and phrases with which a novice echocardiographer may not be familiar. Many chapters have multiple choice questions where the answer to the question being asked is not actually in the chapter. There are large but important areas missing, even for noncardiac anaesthetists, such as pericardial effusion/tamponade and fluid responsiveness. The chapter on transthoracic echocardiography has no figures and is very unhelpful for a novice.

The highlight of the package is the brief animation at the start of the DVD which shows TOE probe position, anatomic correlation and the subsequent echocardiographic image. This is quite good. Unfortunately, in the rest of the DVD package many of the images are of low quality and, frustratingly, many of the images do not correspond with the written explanation in the text. For example, Video 2.2 talks about mirror image artefact and the aorta, yet shows a clip of a Eustachian valve. This unfortunately occurred with many more of the clips. While these errors are obvious to those with a background in TOE, they would not be so to a novice, for whom this book is aimed.

At A$125.99 on the publisher's website, this book could not be recommended, either as an introductory text or one for those with more expertise. Many better versions exist. It would be similarly unsuitable as a text for local University of Melbourne echocardiography courses. The University of Toronto website has a similar animation of TOE images at no charge, which can be viewed at

B. S. Cowie

Melbourne, Victoria
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Author:Cowie, B.S.
Publication:Anaesthesia and Intensive Care
Article Type:Book review
Date:Jul 1, 2013
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