December 19, 1990

A History of Vascular Surgery

Author Affiliations

Northwestern University Medical School Chicago, Ill

Northwestern University Medical School Chicago, Ill


by Steven G. Friedman, 212 pp, with illus, $27.50, Mount Kisco, NY, Futura Publishing Co, 1989.

JAMA. 1990;264(23):3075. doi:10.1001/jama.1990.03450230111045

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As vascular surgery emerges as a specialty in the field of surgery, this monograph provides a comprehensive description of its history. Thirteen chapters ranging from practices in antiquity to recent advances form the body of the text. Appropriate illustrations have been inserted to highlight the original surgical procedures. In addition, there are ample photographs of pioneering surgeons to add a special flavor in this nicely produced monograph.

Chapter 1 gives an excellent description of the beginnings of vascular surgery. Surgery attained a remarkable development in ancient India, and it is fitting that the author gives proper credit to Sushruta, the father of Hindu surgery. His contribution has been largely ignored in many historical writings on vascular surgery. In fact, knowledge of early surgery has been gained for the most part from three sacred books, the Rig Veda, the Atharva Veda, and the Sushruta Samhita. The description of contributions by Sushruta,