The fifth edition of Cyber Textbook of Operative Surgery by ENT Masterclass has been a game changer. It is probably the world’s largest ‘virtual library’ of ENT surgical videos with over 540 videos of ‘surgical masters’ from International Centres of Excellence.
The textbook is a welcome free resource at a time when, due to COVID-19, face-to-face dissection courses and visiting surgical fellowships are not available. In the fifth edition there has been a complete rethink of how the educational material available can be accessed quickly. This cyber textbook has always been divided into the subspecialties, however in the latest edition surgeries within each subspecialty are listed under subheadings, making this resource very user friendly and easy to search.
The chapter of Rhinology and Facial Plastics has had a complete face-lift when compared with previous editions and, particularly for the British higher surgical trainees, they will find very high-quality instructional videos on a variety of techniques – an excellent resource for their examinations. The chapter on Basic ENT skills has been significantly improved, thus augmenting the scarce educational resources for junior ENT trainees and medical students.
The cyber textbook has stepped in with videos to fill the void of old school surgical atlases, the majority of which have documentary (audio or text) whilst some of the videos lack description which should not be a problem for experienced surgeons. On the plus side there are multiple videos on the same topic reflecting different clinical cultures.
The topics in audiology have been very well covered. I found the videos on principals of masking, audiometry and types of nystagmus very engaging. In my opinion, Audiology and Balance would have benefitted from a separate heading, instead of a subheading under Basic ENT Skills. This is not a contradiction to the hard work of the editors, instead a suggestion for the next edition as some of the senior trainees may not visit the Basic ENT skills heading and will thus lose out on a fantastic resource hidden within it.
In summary, I highly recommend the Cyber Textbook of Operative Surgery to all ENT surgeons and at all levels. In my opinion this is an equally good resource for a trainee as well as an established ENT surgeon.