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Editorial
December 2001

Surgical Textbooks and Journals

Arch Surg. 2001;136(12):1343-1344. doi:10.1001/archsurg.136.12.1343

It is a most gratifying sign of the rapid progress of our time that our best textbooks become antiquated so quickly.—Theodore Billroth (1829-1894) The Medical Sciences in the German University, Part II

WE MUST not repeat the Rip Van Winkle syndrome by sleeping through a publication revolution. A plethora of surgery textbooks have been received by the editor in recent months. An ever-increasing number of new surgical journals continue to emerge. These textbooks are uniformly heavy, expensive, and comprehensive. The marketing data, which support the need for these publications, are difficult to access; securing this information takes on the aura of violating publication sacredness. Joining this list of prestigious contemporary textbooks this fall will be ACS Surgery: Principles and Practices, a hardcover evolving from Scientific American Surgery. Each production is designed to offer evidence-based principles applied to the care of the surgical patient, explain the pathophysiology of disease and injury states, and outline ever-increasing therapeutic options. These authors deserve our respect and professional admiration for their correlation of this geometrically increasing knowledge base. Their unique organizational skills represent impressive labors of love.

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