Make no mistake, this is a big book. Admittedly it’s not as big as Scott-Brown, which Liam Flood couldn’t carry from his office to his car without resting several times, but it’s still a whopping beast. Measuring 32cm in height and weighing just under 2kg, it has over 300 glossy pages between its hard covers, and impressive names on its contributor list.
Mario Sanna has compiled a spectacular tome with his colleagues from Gruppo Otolologico, together with experts from the Netherlands and USA.
I was delighted by the opening chapter which details the history of auditory implantation, and those who know me will imagine my excitement to discover a second chapter on surgical anatomy. History and anatomy: these are a few of my favourite things. Half expecting a third chapter on caffè Italiano to complete my indulgent read, I was not too disappointed to find it focuses on radiology, and is complemented by clear, detailed images.
This book really earns its keep by virtue of its 57 clinical cases, each detailing step-by-step surgical procedures with accompanying photographs. There are links to online video content. It was fascinating to read the cases, especially those describing challenging clinical scenarios. One of the pieces of advice I give to junior colleagues is to travel before they settle into a permanent job. There is nothing which compares to the richness of experience which comes from seeing beautiful surgery performed by experts around the world; colleagues who have refined their techniques over decades of training and experience. This book comes close to matching the experience of such travel, such is the completeness of its wisdom expressed through images and text. This book would be most useful for a surgeon planning fellowship training in auditory implant surgery. I will, however, continue to recommend travel, and would love to make a trip to Piacenza myself, to share real-life surgical expertise and a piping hot caffè in il bel paese.