Professor Mohan de Silva MS FRCS (Edin) Professor of Surgery, University of Sri Jayewardenepura, Colombo, Sri Lanka; Honorary Consultant Surgeon, Mid Cheshire Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, UK
Creating a differential diagnosis and rationalising a treatment plan is a challenging task for medical students and young doctors at the early stage of their training. This process will also expose deficiencies in core knowledge and problems in applying certain components of their knowledge to varied clinical situations.
Guided by experienced teachers, students and doctors in training best learn these skills at the bedside. Patients do not always present with classic textbook descriptions and clinical scenarios can often be varied. During the limited period of clinical training allocated in the surgical curriculum, students may not receive sufficient exposure to an evidence-based approach and decision making in clinical surgery.
There is evidence that problem-based learning (PBL) stimulates critical thinking; frequent patient encounters, focused reading, commitment and enthusiasm to acquire the essential core knowledge are all necessary prerequisites in achieving the best outcome from problem-based learning.
This book addresses the essentials; common clinical encounters, a clinical decision-making approach, care pathways, the essential core knowledge of clinical anatomy, pathophysiology pertinent to the topic and a concise discussion of management pathways based on the most up-to-date guidelines (e.g. NICE, SIGN, BASO, BSG) are presented in a student friendly style which makes it easier to retain facts. Frequently asked questions at examinations are emphasised during the discussion. This approach will guide and stimulate the reader to recognise, recall and apply the relevant facts to given clinical situations.
Also included are self-assessment questions: EMQs (Extended Matching Questions), SBAs (Single Best Answers) and True/False types with relevant explanatory notes. The questions are created to reinforce the concepts and to try to inspire the student's thirst for knowledge. The book is primarily aimed at undergraduates and junior doctors.
"Standard textbooks can be daunting. This book is different. I believe
that students and young doctors will find this an easy read and will be able
to translate the scenarios into an understanding of how clinical pathways are
constructed. By asking questions through the pathways students are encouraged
to develop their own ideas - a form of problem-based learning rather than learning
by rote. Retention of facts is so much easier when they form part of a story."
David Cade FRCS Consultant Surgeon