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November 17, 1978

Neonatal Surgery

Author Affiliations

Children's Memorial Hospital Chicago


by P. P. Rickham, James Lister, and Irene M. Irving, ed 2; 621 pp, with illus, $99.95, Woburn, Mass, Butterworths, 1978.

JAMA. 1978;240(21):2332-2333. doi:10.1001/jama.1978.03290210114051

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Peter Rickham was one of the first to recognize the advantages of centralized care for newborn infants with birth defects. A founder of the Liverpool Neonatal Surgical Center, he is currently surgeon in chief at the Zurich, Switzerland, Children's Hospital. The second edition of Neonatal Surgery summarizes his experiences as well as those of a number of other surgeons who work in these two centers.

The nursing care, physiology, and general principles of surgical management of newborn infants are well discussed. The text is organized by regional anatomy, ie, the head and neck, chest and abdomen, rather than along "problem-oriented" lines, which seems to be a more effective teaching method. Each birth defect is discussed with reference to historical aspects, embryology, pathology, diagnosis, treatment, and results. The text is well illustrated with photographs and x-ray films, but line drawings illustrating operative technique are sparse and poorly done. In fact, there