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July 18, 1980

Plastic Surgery

Author Affiliations

Harvard Medical School Massachusetts General Hospital Boston


edited by John Watson and Robert M. McCormack (Operative Surgery: Fundamental International Techniques, Charles Rob, Rodney Smith, and Hugh Dudley, eds), ed 3; 556 pp, with illus, $160, Boston, Butterworths, 1979.

JAMA. 1980;244(3):282. doi:10.1001/jama.1980.03310030056034

The format of this book, one of the Operative Surgery series, is reminiscent of other British publications, with a brief descriptive text immediately adjacent to the serial illustrations. The list of contributors reads like a worldwide Who's Who in plastic surgery, giving an international flavor to the techniques described. There is an abundance of line drawings or half-tones to illustrate each step in the procedures chosen. Almost every aspect of reconstructive surgery is included, from facial clefts to hypospadias, from wound repair to pressure sores, and from skin grafts to sophisticated flaps.

With rare exceptions the statements in the text are dogmatic with little discussion of the principles involved: "The sutures are removed on the 5th day"; "The area is cleaned with Savlon"; "dressings with gauze wrung out with Eusol"; "Make the defect fit the flap and not the flap the defect" (p 44)—strange statement!

Several doubtful conclusions would concern