For the surgeon who has questions about preoperative or postoperative care, this manual from the American College of Surgeons will serve well. The text is organized under four headings: the basics, pediatrics, the organ systems, and special patient problems, ie, multiple injuries, burns, cancer, and physiologic support systems. The authors have kept their sections concise, even to the limited number of select references.
For hypercalcemic crises, we learn the pros and cons of saline and furosemide diuresis, edetic acid, calcitonin, oral and intravenous (IV) phosphates, and mithramycin. For postoperative hypocalcemia, we learn how to manage both the acute and long-term problem.
An excellent chapter on the adrenal gland describes "acute pheochromocytoma"—when uncontrolled hypertension, cardiac arrhythmias, oliguria, high fevers, and leukocytosis suggest sepsis. All of these features, however, can result from catecholamine excess alone. In these troublesome cases α-blockers often have little or no effect, and the author states, "there is