Skip to Main Content

My, how time flies! Can half a decade already have passed since we last edited this textbook? Yet, the time has passed and our field has undergone many changes. We are grateful to the readers of the fifth edition of our textbook. The widespread use of this work have ensured that the time and effort required to produce a sixth edition are justified.

As was true for the fifth edition, the sixth edition represents a significant revision. A few examples are worth noting:

  • Those familiar with the sequence and grouping of content in the fifth edition will notice that chapters have been reordered and content broken out or consolidated to improve the flow of information and eliminate redundancy.

  • The alert reader will note that the section on critical care medicine has been expanded, reflecting the increasing number of very sick patients for whom we care.

  • Enhanced recovery after surgery has progressed from an important concept to a commonly used acronym (ERAS), a specialty society, and (soon) standard of care.

  • Ultrasound has never been more important in anesthesia practice, and its use in various procedures is emphasized throughout the textbook.

Some things remain unchanged:

  • We have not burdened our readers with large numbers of unnecessary references. We hope that long lists of references at the end of textbook chapters will soon go the way of the library card catalog and long-distance telephone charges. We assume that our readers are as fond of (and likely as facile with) Google Scholar and PubMed as are we, and can generate their own lists of references whenever they like. We continue to provide URLs for societies, guidelines, and practice advisories.

  • We continue to emphasize Key Concepts at the beginning of each chapter that link to the chapter discussion, and case discussions at the end.

  • We have tried to provide illustrations and images whenever they improve the flow and understanding of the text .

Once again, the goal expressed in the first edition remains unchanged: “to provide a concise, consistent presentation of the basic principles essential to the modern practice of anesthesia.” And, once again, despite our best intentions, we fear that errors will be found in our text. We are grateful to the many readers who helped improve the last edition. Please email us at when you find errors. This enables us to make corrections in reprints and future editions.

John F. Butterworth, IV, MD
David C. Mackey, MD
John D. Wasnick, MD, MPH

Pop-up div Successfully Displayed

This div only appears when the trigger link is hovered over. Otherwise it is hidden from view.