This short monograph is written by a senior surgical registrar as an introduction to acute surgical problems for the student and "those who have to deal with these problems." It fulfills its goal if the reader is indeed a novice. The brief review of each common problem is generally accurate, although the emphasis is sometimes misplaced.
The sophisticated reader will find much to quarrel with in terms of timing and type of treatment. For example, the nonoperative treatment of an appendiceal mass is well described yet has little place in modern treatment. The use of a barium enema to treat, as well as diagnose, an intussusception is decried, while this technique is the cornerstone of current management of intussusception. Certain omissions are acceptable when one realizes that laparoscopy may not be generally available; however, culdocentesis may be critical in the diagnosis of ectopic pregnancy and should have been mentioned. Similar