With the advent of increased use of peripheral nerve blocks in anesthesia for adults, ultrasound techniques have been evolving to improve technique and efficiency over the past 10 yr. During this time, change and adoption of these techniques in pediatric anesthesia have been much slower. This book is the first truly comprehensive textbook for managing peripheral nerve blocks in children. Many textbooks in regional anesthesia address techniques that serve either nerve stimulation or ultrasound. Pediatric Atlas of Ultrasound- and Nerve Stimulation-guided Regional Anesthesia is a well-designed textbook on peripheral nerve blocks in children that includes information for both techniques. This book is well written and can be used by novices as well as by experienced personnel who use it as a refresher before performing a peripheral nerve block. Even though the textbook is geared for pediatric patients, it can definitely be used for adult regional anesthesia as well.
The book is organized with its own table of contents and includes information about the surface anatomy, nerve stimulation, and ultrasound-guided techniques. In Part I of the book, the authors provide a very detailed description of the organizational aspects of performing regional anesthesia. They include descriptions of equipment and a nice review of the principles of nerve stimulation and ultrasound equipment and technique. For readers unfamiliar with the use of stimulating catheters (a technique extensively developed by Dr. Tsui), there is even a chapter with manual-like descriptions of the needed equipment and techniques.
In Part II of the book, the authors review topics that are specific to pediatric regional anesthesia, including pain assessment, pharmacologic considerations, and adverse events.
Part III of the book dives into important anatomic considerations of the various blocks that are then described in Parts IV to XI. If there is one criticism of the book’s organization it is that Part III is separated from its companion chapters in Parts IV to XI that describe the blocks. Readers would definitely benefit from integration of this information.
For many readers, the most satisfying sections of the book are found in Parts IV to XI where the actual specific block techniques are described in organized detail. Separately there are also chapters on neuraxial techniques (Part XI). These chapters are organized with sections on indications, surface anatomy, nerve stimulation technique, and ultrasound-guided technique, followed by current literature and a case study for the individual blocks. One of the great advantages of this book is that it also discusses differences in anatomy and bony architecture in various age groups and how they may impact performing these blocks. This is one aspect that is quite unique, compared to other ultrasound-guided regional anesthesia textbooks.
In the age of the Internet, books have become dynamic, and we often are able to take advantage of this through online content. Unfortunately, there are no online links with real-time dynamic videos demonstrating how to perform the blocks in this otherwise nicely written and organized book. That being said, this book otherwise fulfills every need for pediatric regional anesthesia. In summary, Pediatric Atlas of Ultrasound- and Nerve Stimulation-guided Regional Anesthesia is a comprehensive regional anesthesia textbook geared for care of pediatric patients. It will prove useful for both novices and experienced anesthesiologists. Its organization begins with the important principles, clinical anatomy, and equipment needs and then progresses to step-by-step descriptions for performing the blocks. The figures and pictures are well selected. This book is highly recommended for anyone who is interested in pediatric regional anesthesia.