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Obstetric Anesthesia Handbook.

Obstetric Anesthesia Handbook; Fourth Edition. S. Datta; Springer Science+Media, Inc., 233 Spring Street, New York, NY 10013, U.S.A.; Distributor: DA Information Systems www.dadirect.com.au; $80.50; pp. 409; ISBN 0-387-26075-7.

This book is the fourth edition from this internationally known obstetric anaesthetist and author--the last was published in 2000.

The text is a basic manual aimed at the anaesthetist-in-training and its size and presentation reflect that intention. It remains an introductory text rather than a source of reference.

Whilst the publisher has changed, there is little of major difference within the text since the last edition. The chapter headings, layout and page numbers are almost identical.

The ASA Practice Guidelines have been updated, but there is little new in the text to reflect many of the changes in practice that have occurred and some sections are now outdated. The role of spinal anaesthesia in pre-eclampsia has been updated, but combined spinal and epidural anaesthesia receives little more attention than the previous edition, and could be further expanded. The issues of anticoagulation and regional anaesthesia appear in the briefest of form in the section on maternal mortality. PCEA in labour receives the briefest of discussion. Many of the stated "recent references" are now 20 years old or more, and the illustrations often dated.

The section on general anaesthesia does not reflect current practice. The topic of failed intubation is scant and contains no current algorithm. The topic is not even indexed. The section on awareness does not include neurological EEG monitoring.

Trimethaphan is still recommended as an anti-hypertensive though it is no longer available. Nifedipine has been overlooked as a current tocolytic and antihypertensive. Doses of recommended drugs are often omitted.

The index of 29 pages has been expanded but is still incomplete in detail. With these caveats, for the price the book represents a lot of information for the money--it is a pity that it is no longer all current information.

A. Ross

Heidelberg, Victoria
COPYRIGHT 2006 Australian Society of Anaesthetists
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Copyright 2006 Gale, Cengage Learning. All rights reserved.

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Author:Ross, A.
Publication:Anaesthesia and Intensive Care
Date:Oct 1, 2006
Words:330
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