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Edited by Wolfgang Seeger, Josef Zwntner (Pp 419, EUR 248). Published by Springer-Verlag, New York, 2002. ISBN 3 211 83741 8
The increasing use of frameless neuronavigation constantly poses new challenges to neurosurgeons. Its aim is to create a linkage between digital image data and anatomical structure. This provides increasing 3-D orientation and hopefully thereby making operative interventions less traumatic, more precise, and also avoids external frames for stereotactic biopsies. Its increasing use in skull based surgery has particularly aided this multidisciplinary and interdisciplinary branch of surgery. The major drawback has been that the localisation, achieved at the onset of surgery, as a result of intraoperative movement of brain (brain shift) will considerably reduce the accuracy of surgical targets. Therefore checks during the procedure are essential if safe and effective surgery is to be carried out. To date, mathematical modelling and real time data acquisition have not resolved this dilemma. The book provides some 200 pages of drawings which provide guidance for individual plans and to neuronavigational surgery by providing landmarks in the form of both points and shapes. It also provides some advice on surgical technique and approaches. It is useful both for the individual using neuronavigational techniques and also for those carrying out more traditional surgery.
As an atlas it is more of a reference book and reflects the experience of two very senior authors. The drawings are in colour, and although schematic, cannot be faulted in their purpose. If I were to make any criticism then I feel that the book is large and that there is a fair amount of wasted space, but this is entirely in keeping with the format of an atlas and perhaps a different layout would not have provided the clarity the authors were seeking to achieve. As a reference book it will prove both useful to individual surgeons and also to libraries.
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