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Paediatric anaesthesia – a comprehensive book of instructive cases

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Stoddart PA, Lauder GR: Problems in Anaesthesia: Paediatric Anaesthesia. London: Martin Dunitz; 2004: 226 pp. ISBN 1841842125

Paediatric anaesthesia is a profession that deals with children from all ages, ranging from the extreme premature to the adolescent of 16 years of age; in other words, from neonatology through paediatrics to internal medicine and surgery. This means that the paediatric patient is not a standard patient to be fitted into protocols. Often the problems are related to rare congenital diseases, which necessitates that the anaesthetist in charge make thoughtful preparation. However, more common acquired problems such as trauma, oncology or infectious diseases in the very young can also be a challenge. Another specific target group is the paediatric mentally retarded patient sometimes combined with cerebral palsy. In brief, paediatric anaesthesia is a young profession that combines specific expertise with experience and academic background.

In the book described, many experienced paediatric anaesthetists each cover a certain topic in a preformatted manner (introduction, case history, preoperative, perioperative or post-operative features, learning points, and recommended literature). Thus, the book contains 35 chapters and 226 pages of more or less common problems in paediatric anaesthesia. The book is intended for both trainees and more experienced anaesthetists. It is clearly written, appropriately illustrated and contains in each chapter considerable theoretical background as well as several recent references. This makes it suitable for daily practice while preparing a certain case, but also useful in the training programme. The book is therefore to be recommended. In addition, the accent on postoperative management, as well as an extensive description of the retrieval of a patient with meningococcal sepsis, emphasizes the need for close cooperation between paediatric anaesthetists and paediatric intensivists.

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Correspondence to Jan A Hazelzet.

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The authors declare that they have no competing interests.

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Bezstarosti, J., Hazelzet, J.A. Paediatric anaesthesia – a comprehensive book of instructive cases. Crit Care 9, E16 (2004).

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