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Dynamic Chiropractic
July 28, 1997, Volume 15, Issue 16

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Book Review

Book: Foot and Ankle Pain, 3rd. edition, 1996
Author: Rene Cailliet, MD
Publisher: F.A. Davis Company, Philadelphia,
(800) 323-3555
Price: $22.95 (softcover)
Category: Doctor and student education

If you are unfamiliar with the Cailliet "pain series," then you probably haven't read very much in the area of neuromusculoskeletal health care. I was first introduced to this wonderful series as a student. The books fill a niche for the student interested in conditions causing pain in the spine and extremities. The books in this series have a number of features in common. They are compact, easy to read, comprehensive in their scope and affordable.

The third edition of Foot and Ankle Pain lives up to the reputation of the series. Dr. Cailliet has revised this work to encompass changes in our understanding of neurophysiology and pain. The book, as in past editions, is extensively illustrated by the author. The illustrations are simple black and white and are not detailed anatomic drawings. They are really schematics clearly expressing the concept to be learned.

Dr. Cailliet has enhanced the previous editions of this work in several ways. The chapter on examination primarily, and other chapters as well, seem to have more detail on the manual examination of the foot. It becomes clear to the reader that Dr. Cailliet believes the basis of good diagnosis relies on thorough, careful examination. There is a review of the anatomy and physiology of the foot in chapter 1, with chapter 2 devoted to the foot in its walking function. The various components of the foot and ankle are covered with particular emphasis paid to the great toe and heel.

Many of the conditions affecting the foot are covered in the various chapters. Each is described in clear terms easily understood by those just beginning their study in this field. There is a more extensive discussion of reflex sympathetic dystrophy (RSD). In fact, chapter 10 is dedicated to this subject alone. Although most think of RSD as a condition of the shoulder, arm and hand, the author discusses the causes and clinical findings associated with it in the lower extremity. In fact, Dr. Cailliet discusses the rather serious ramifications that can occur if this important condition is misdiagnosed in a patient.

Some might say this book would be better with more true-to-life anatomic drawings or color illustrations or photographic plates. That might be so, but then this simple, easy to understand book would take on the character of a large, cumbersome textbook rather then the simple paperback reference that a doctor or student can grab and quickly get a synopsis of the condition in question.

Let others write the large textbooks. It is my hope that Dr. Cailliet continues to keep this series the way it is: usable, portable and affordable.

Dr. Savoie's rating -- 9.5

Stephen Savoie, DC
Newburyport, MA

Dynamic Chiropractic
July 28, 1997, Volume 15, Issue 16

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