Tracheal Intubation: Theory and Practice. By John W. R. McIntyre and Akitomo Matsuki. Pacific, MO, Medico Dental Media International, Inc., 1998. Pages: 137. Soft cover. Price:$40.00.

This compact text provides a thorough and, as well stated in the publisher's overview, “detailed account of the theory of tracheal intubation and a guide to its safe practice for the practitioner be it anesthesiologist, nurse, dentist, or paramedic.” The table of contents provides a terse and broad listing of the book's offerings. There is no index. There is, however, a bibliography of 338 sources. There are seven tables and 16 figures that allow for clarification of the material presented in the text.

Chapters are usually organized in numbered sections, the subdivisions of which are logically titled and arranged. At the end of many chapters, the educational objectives are simply stated, as well as methods for their acquisition and subsequent evaluation of the adequacy of learning. In several chapters—notably 3, 7, and 8—procedures and actions are listed, accompanied by their possible outcomes, both positive and negative. They express interesting and useful learning processes.

It must be said, however, that there are numerous errors in grammar, syntax, spelling, and punctuation, as well as statements that demonstrate a lack of clarity or meaning. Examples can be found, respectively, on page 56, second paragraph; page 16, bottom paragraph; page 22, third paragraph, and page 47; on pages 23 and 57, third paragraphs; and on page 106, top, the remainder of the last paragraph from page 105.

All in all, this pocket-sized book contains much highly useful and thoroughly commented-on information. The second chapter, for instance, is an invaluable guide to alerting one to a difficult airway. In addition, the authors at times freely offer their own enlightening insights via  opinions and philosophies, particularly in the latter chapters. It is, at $40.00, slightly overpriced, considering its size, soft cover, and unpolished text, but one might consider the ingredients of the stew to be more important than the serving vessel that contains them.