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L. Mettler (ed): Manual for laparoscopic and hysteroscopic gynaecological surgery

Jitender P. vij, Jaypee Brothers, New Delhi, 2006, hardcover, 184 pp. US$ 60

The purpose of this book is to serve as an excellent manual that presents the description of the individual endoscopic surgical steps and their practical application. The author, Prof. Liselotte Mettler, as well as five other current professional contributors, has put together a classic encyclopaedia in the archives of operative endoscopic manuals.

The text itself has 184 pages, with ten chapters. It is a hard-covered, well-bound, glossy paged book with readable font, relatively bold prints and is appropriately multi-coloured. The book cover is simple, yet inviting. The style of writing is easy to understand, with clarity in the flow of thought. There are 283 diagrams, the majority appreciably well labelled, and 152 live pictures/ photo images, also impressively illustrating. The text also contains educative flow charts, tables and graphical representations.

The book is divided into three sections. Section A begins with a detailed historical perspective, tracing the genealogy of minimally invasive surgery in a most unparallel fashion. It also includes a description of apparatus and instrumentation beautifully highlighted on a function or use basis. Furthermore, it describes possible techniques, with emphasis on safe abdominal entry. The section ends with a brief but relevant pathophysiology of pneumoperitoneum.

Section B is the ‘meaty core’ of the book. It draws on the wealth of experience of the author, where she gives detailed step-by-step approaches to various gynae-endoscopic operations. This juicy section begins with a very comprehensive list of operative indications. It covers all areas of uterine, adnexal, endometrial and adhesiolysis surgery, urogynaecology, pelvic floor reconstruction, bowel surgery relevant to a gynaecologist, and some endoscopic breast surgery.

The uniqueness of this section is the pattern of flow for each category of surgery, i.e. a brief pre-operative evaluation, comments on anatomical prerequisites, and detailed operative procedure, and it ends with a synopsis and post-operative management. This section also noticeably avoids the repetition that is characteristic of such operative manuals. The colour representations for the histograms of extrauterine pregnancy in this portion of the book were, however, inappropriate in the footnote.

Section C, written by M. Schollmeyer, on extra-genital findings in gynae-laparoscopy and the ultrasonic cutting technique, is a beautiful catalogue of illustrations and an extra for the adept reader. The concluding chapter of the text is a ‘prophetic’ voice, highlighting with great optimism areas for future development in minimally invasive gynaecology. One actually feels most the deepest thoughts of the author in this chapter. The appendix also contains a list of literature, arranged in alphabetical order and providing additional sources of information for further reading. The index is a well-organized four pages of helpful links, which gives this text an edge over other surgical manuals.

We applaud Prof L. Mettler for this compilation. The book seeks to provide, and for the most part presents, an excellent guide for the trainee endoscopist and a non-monotonous recall for the practising gynaecological endoscopist. Future provision of perhaps a complementary visual aids DVD-ROM will certainly place this text at an exceptional level.

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Correspondence to Ayodapo S. Soyinka.

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Soyinka, A.S. L. Mettler (ed): Manual for laparoscopic and hysteroscopic gynaecological surgery. Gynecol Surg 4, 65 (2007).

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