Psychosomatic Aspects of Surgery. Edited by ALFREDJ. CANTORand ARTIWR N. FOXE. New York: Grune and Stratton: f2. 6s. pp, 220. T~JEproceedings of the First Annual Meeting of the Academy of Psychosomatic Medicine, held in New York in 1954, are published in this volume. Papers were presented by representatives of most of the surgical specialties, and commentaries on each were given by psychiatrists and psychologists. The meeting concluded with a panel discussion of a more general nature. The emphasis in most papers was somatopsychic rather than the reverse, the majority of authors considering the relationship between doctor and patient and the effect of various diseases and procedures upon the patient’s behaviour and emotions. However, Dr. CANTOR’Sremark in his preface, that the surgeons were “oriented in psychosomatic medicine,” may explain a number of statements that might be criticized by other surgeons not so orientated. The report will enable a psychiatrist or psychologist who is unfamiliar with the multitude of surgical departments, to discover some of the psychosomatic problems that exist, and the common ground that lies between these fields. He will disagree with much that was said, and will find that some papers are more worthy of attention than others. Nevertheless many aspects of the subjects were reviewed, and in a group of papers on cardiovascular surgery the neuropsychiatric complications and associated conditions in 1500 cases were analysed, providing information that could usefully be obtained in other branches. A number of the many references given in the book are irrelevant, and your reviewer agrees with one of the speakers, “that nothing of a startling scientific nature appeared at this meeting.”
ANTONELLIF. and M. Pp. 282. 1,500 lire.
Psiche e Tubercolosi. Istituto di Medicina Sociale, Rome,
THE introductory remarks of Professor Omodei-Zorini (director of the Institute C. Forlanini for TB in Rome) welcome this book as part of a new trend in psychosomatic research on patients suffering from tuberculosis. The publication of this work was supported by the lnstituto di Medicina Sociale (Rome). The two authors present their book in three parts. In the first there are four chapters dealing with general considerations upon the psychology of TB patients admitted to a TB sanatorium, psychological aspects of tuberculosis, “psychoreceptivity” to tuberculosis, psychopathogenesis of tuberculosis. The second part of the book includes a discussion on the value of some psychological tests (Zulliger; Banati-Fischer; Traube; Machower; Koch; and graphology) and a summary of the lest results in ten illustrative cases. There is no homogeneity in the selected cases as some of the patients had been admitted for a few months, others for years; some appear to be fresh cases, others had been for years in various TB sanatoria. There is no mention of the clinical outcome of any of the cases presented. The reproduction of patients’ drawings is meant to illustrate various aspects of the psychology and psychopathology of TB patients. There is no evidence that the patients have been tested more than once during the long course of their illness. The third part is formed by three chapters: Psychodynamics; the depression of the patient with TB; and “Psychosocial diergotherapy.” The title of this chapter could be translated more simply in English as “occupational therapy” and is largely a complaint about the lack of facilities for occupational and re-educational therapy in TB sanatoria in Italy.. The style appears to vary according to the author of each chapter. The whole book is devoted to describing in dramatic psychological terms the unhappiness of patients suffering from TB. No comptirison is attempted with results of psychological tests in patients with prolonged illnesses other than tuberculosis. Very little factual information is given throughout. A bibliography of five pages and an index are included in this volume of 282 pages, G. PAMPIGLIONE