April 1991

Emergency Abdominal Surgery

Author Affiliations

Augusta, Ga


vol 17, edited by R. C. N. Williamson and M. J. Cooper, 272 pp, with illus, $125, New York, NY: Churchill Livingstone Inc, 1990.

Arch Surg. 1991;126(4):529. doi:10.1001/archsurg.1991.01410280133024

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This is a superb text with 31 carefully selected authoritative contributions from the United Kingdom, Australia, South Africa, and the United States.

This book is selective rather than comprehensive in its coverage of abdominal emergencies. For example, discussion of peptic ulcer disease is limited to hemorrhage. Perforation and obstruction are excluded. The coverage of this subject, however, is compactly complete in its discussion of the use of endoscopy in diagnosis, the role of conservative management (including pharmacologic and endoscopic therapy), indications for emergency surgery, and timing of surgical intervention. It also provides advice concerning the type of surgery to be performed in both duodenal and gastric ulcerations. Although the authors of this chapter outline their own perspectives and prejudices, they are careful to present other points of view in a manner that challenges the reader to weigh options while reflecting on solutions to problems. In doing so, they have, indeed,

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