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  • Print publication year: 2015
  • Online publication date: December 2015

Preface

Summary

Navigating through the minefields of obstetric anaesthesia is becoming more and more challenging. Obstetric anaesthetists are encountering a much broader range of pathologies owing to the ever increasing morbidity affecting women of childbearing age. This book aims to provide healthcare professionals caring for parturients with a wealth of up-to-date information on a broad range of aspects affecting obstetric care.

The book is divided into six sections. Section 1 addresses the basic sciences, including expected physiological and pharmacological alterations associated with pregnancy, and epidemiology. Section 2, entitled obstetric aspects, includes maternal critical care, antenatal assessment and a chapter authored by an obstetrician, dedicated to obstetrics for the anaesthetist.

Section 3 covers all aspects of provision of anaesthesia, including incidental anaesthesia (for those parturients requiring non-obstetric surgery whilst pregnant), regional and non-regional analgesia for labour, regional and general anaesthesia for operative delivery and anaesthesia for specific obstetric indications. Section 4 is divided into easily navigable chapters that cover the common conditions encountered during pregnancy, ranging from obesity and pre-eclampsia to allergy, sepsis and HIV. Dedicated chapters for individual systems detail commonly encountered conditions, how these conditions can be affected by pregnancy and suggested peripartum management plans.

Section 5 focuses on postpartum complications and maternal collapse. Section 6 changes the direction away from clinical practice and addresses ethics and consent, clinical governance and multidisciplinary training for members of the delivery suite.

By combining obstetric and anaesthetic authorship on many chapters, we aspire to give the reader a well-founded knowledge base with which to approach situations on the delivery suite. This book is a must have for current, easily accessible opinion, making it valuable for anaesthetic trainees sitting examinations, occasional dabblers in obstetric anaesthesia and full-time obstetric anaesthetic consultants alike. Most up-to-date literature and initiatives, including National Audit Project 5, Cochrane reviews, guidelines and enhanced recovery after surgery are discussed.

We hope that this addition to the core topic range will assist healthcare professionals in the rapidly changing complex field of obstetric anaesthesia.