DIGEST LIVER OK 2001;33:99
Book reviews Textbook of gastroenterology Y. Yamada, D.H. Alpers, L. Laine, C. Owyang, D.W. Powell Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Philadelphia, USA, 1999, 3 173 pages, US$265. ISBN O-397-58735-X. Format: Hardcover book (two volumes). Purpose: To make available a textbook with various purposes: to teach the scientific basis of gastroenterology, to provide practical approaches to common gastrointestinal problems, to serve as an encyclopaedic reference for gastrointestinal diseases and to indicate the current applications and future directions of technology in this specific field. Content: The book is divided into four parts and describes all that one needs to know in the gastrointestinal field, with the exclusion of liver diseases. Part One (more than 600 pages) is dedicated to the description of mechanisms of normal and abnormal gastrointestinal function and prepares the reader to understand the pathophysiology of digestive disorders: it is a hard and difficult section but it is written with great competence and depth. Part Two (more than 500 pages) is extremely enjoyable and very easy reading: it is devoted to the clinical approach to patients presenting with common gastrointestinal problems. Part Three (1500 pages) is a detailed encyclopaedic description of virtually all the diseases encountered in clinical practice. Finally, part Four (about 500 pages) is entirely dedicated to the most common and modern diagnostic and therapeutic modalities in gastroenterology. Commentary: During the decade since the first edition of this highly successful book was presented (this is the third edition), gastroenterology has undergone changes which have exceeded all expectations. To cite but one example, our approach to patients with peptic ulcer, cholecystitis and colon cancer has changed profoundly after the discovery of Helicobacter pylori, introduction of laparoscopic cholecystectomy and studies on DNA mismatch repair enzyme gene mutations. In order to bring their book into line with progress, the editors and authors have updated every section, and almost 30 per cent of the chapters have been prepared by new experts in order to provide a fresh look at the material. The result is, on the whole, excellent: the information (which covers the entire digestive tract with the exception of the liver) is absolutely encyclopaedic, the language clear and convincing, the tables, figures and illustrations well reproduced in great quantity and complementary to the text, the list of references outstanding. In this third edition, the use of light colour to highlight the titles of tables and the subdivision of chapters is rewarding and an aid to easy reading. A word of praise for the huge index which is present at the end of each of the two volumes. Final note: Dr. Yamada and his four editors should be complimented on this third edition of their textbook which maintains a unique degree of encyclopaedic information and provides an outstanding opportunity for education and information in the specific field. Gastroenterologists, surgeons, internists and primary care physicians should seriously consider the scientific pleasure they will miss without this textbook in their personal library. Reuiewer: G. Bianchi Porro (Milan, Italy).
Atlas of gastroenterology T. Yamada, D.H. Alpers, L. Laine, C. Owyang, D.W. Powell Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Baltimore, USA, 1999, 928 pages, US$ 215. ISBN O-397-58767.8 Format: Hardcover book. Purpose: This beautiful atlas has been designed to be especially useful in conjunction with the Textbook but, thanks to the qual-
ity and beauty of many figures, it will be a valuable educational source for gastroenterologists, internists and surgeons. Content: As already stated, after publishing the third edition of their Textbook of Gastroenterology, the authors, following the old adage that “a picture is worth a thousand words” have endeavoured to provide a second edition of the atlas which has additional figures and chapters to cover new subjects. The composition remains virtually unchanged, however, with a distinct chapter format corresponding to the chapters in the Textbook. Of course, not all the topics in the Textbook are presented here (only those which could be enhanced by graphic images) and this inevitably leads to some duplication and repetition but, on the whole, the Atlas is easy to read and pleasing to the eye. Commentary: The quality of the figures, graphs, as well as the histologic and radiologic material is, on average, fairly good, while the short but clearly written text and legends will surely meet with approval. Final note: This is a beautiful but extremelv exoensive book: those who have already spent a month’s salary purchasing the Textbook do not really need it; those who do not have the Textbook may choose to convince their library to purchase it, as this seems the most appropriate place for this volume. Reviewer: G. Bianchi Porro (Milan, Italy).
Gastroesophageal reflux disease R.C. Orlando Marcel Dekker Inc, New York, 2000, 405 pages, US$ 175. ISBN o-8247-0389-8 Format: Hardcover book Purpose: To produce a state-of-art review covering all aspects of GERD: epidemiology, risk factors, pathophysiology, clinical course and manifestations, diagnostic testing, medical and surgical treatment, oesophageal complications and extra-oesophageal manifestations, GERD in infants and children. Content: 13 chapters assembled by an international group of recognized experts covering nearly everything on GERD. In particular, epidemiology (rather briefly) is covered by D. -Provenzale, the diagnostic tests (very comprehensively) by J. Richter. the antireflux barrier bv P. Kahrilas. tissue resistance bv the editor himself, Barrett’s esophagus by J Spechler, the medical therapy by G. Tytgat and the surgical therapy by L. Lundell, to quote only some of my favourite chapters. Commentary: To be quite honest, this is a book which I had been waiting for, for a long time, due to the fact that R.C. Orlando is one of the two or three recognized “popes” of GERDology. There can be no doubt, it contains the more important data and facts generated in the field during the last decade. Special emphasis has been placed on new issues, such as the relationship between H. pylon’ and oesophagitis, to the endoscopic surveillance of Barrett’s oesophagus and its ablative therapy, to the intrieuinn entitv called NERD (non-erosive reflux disease) and iti tre%me& Strangely enough, I found, however, no mention of some important topics, such as the problem (and related importance) of the nocturnal acid breakthrough, or the dilemma between medical or surgical treatment (which is not addressed either in the Tytgat chapter on drugs, or in that of Lundell on knives). Final note: I very much appreciated some tables and graphs, as, for example, the list of trials using proton pump inhibitors on GERD, or the relationship between the annual oesophageal cancer incidence and the optimal frequency of surveillance. In my opinion, this book is a necessary must for the library of all gastroenterologists and of some paediatricians, pulmonologists, otolaryngologists and internists. Reviewer: F. Pace, (Milan, Italy).