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Book and Media Reviews
March 1, 2006


Author Affiliations

Book and Media Reviews Section Editor: Harriet S. Meyer, MD, Contributing Editor, JAMA.

JAMA. 2006;295(9):1067-1072. doi:10.1001/jama.295.9.1067-b

My favorite element of Clinical Anesthesia, edited by Barash et al, is the Key Points (take-home messages) at the beginning of each of the 59 chapters. These should be required for all comprehensive textbooks. The Key Points become a road map for each chapter, with blue numbers on the page margins pointing to the locations of the corresponding information.

This fifth edition has key systems of the anesthesiologist's métier represented on its redesigned cover: the heart (echocardiography showing mitral regurgitation by color Doppler flow), the lungs (endobronchial blocker), the airway (anatomy of larynx), and the autonomic nervous system (thoracolumbar sympathetic nerve distribution). Inside, editors Barash, Cullen, and Stoelting divide the book into six parts (not including the appendix on electrocardiography), with half the chapters residing in the “Management of Anesthesia” section. Overall, the text is well organized. For my presbyopia, though, I wish the font were larger than 9 picas. I especially like how the book links clinical decisions with the relevant pathophysiology. At 1595 pages and eight lb, the new Clinical Anesthesia is similar in size to the fourth edition (2001).