From the the University of California, Davis–East Bay, Oakland.
Edited by Ronna Henry Siegel, MD, Contributing Editor.
IMPORTANT recent developments in general surgery include modification
of the approach to the management of severely injured patients. Outcome data
have become available for some types of laparoscopic surgery, and medical
and surgical resources on the Internet are increasing.
The discipline of surgery has rapidly accelerated onto the information
superhighway, the Internet. Wang et al,1 describing
the Internet as "one of the greatest developments in informational exchange
this century," provided an overview of the Internet for physicians, including
electronic mail, mailing lists, and the World Wide Web. Richards2,3
described, particularly for the surgeon, the origins of the Internet and the
uses of the World Wide Web. Several major surgical societies, including the
American College of Surgeons (http://www.facs.org), the American
Association for the Surgery of Trauma (http://www.aast.org), and
the Eastern Association for the Surgery of Trauma (http://east.org)
now have Web sites. These sites include informative articles, practice guidelines,
case presentations, and real-time discussion groups. There are online bulletin
boards where one can post a question about a case, instantly deliver it to
practitioners worldwide, and receive responses within minutes. Numerous journals
and listings of surgical residency programs and fellowships are also available
online. To enable users to assess the quality of online medical information,
core standards for online sources have been proposed.4
These standards include providing complete authorship information with institutional
affiliation(s) and relevant credentials, documentation of all content sources,
and full disclosure of financial sponsorship and interests.
Organ, Jr CH, Porter JM. General Surgery. JAMA. 1998;280(6):495–496. doi:10.1001/jama.280.6.495
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