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Over its 26 editions, Williams Obstetrics has aimed to serve practicing obstetricians and midwives in the bedside care of their patients. With its detailed explanations of disease pathophysiology and treatment fundamentals, it provides a bedrock text for residents who are training in Obstetrics or in Family Medicine specialties. Fellows in Maternal–Fetal Medicine will benefit from its additional discussions of complicated pathology and management. Last, Williams Obstetrics can aid specialists who act as consultants for gravidas with non-pregnancy-related disorders. Specifically, each chapter in Section 12 focuses on a specific organ system, the normal physiological changes and frequent disorders of that system in pregnancy, and suitable treatment options.

For this 26th edition, we continue to present the detailed staples of basic obstetrics such as maternal anatomy and physiology, preconceptional and prenatal care, labor, delivery, and the puerperium. These accompany detailed discussions of obstetrical complications exemplified by preterm labor, hemorrhage, hypertension, and many more. To emphasize the “M” in Maternal–Fetal Medicine, we continue to instruct on the many medical and surgical disorders that can complicate pregnancy. And, our second patient—the fetus—has accrued especial attention with an entire section devoted to diagnosis and treatment of fetal disorders. For all of these, we once again emphasize the science-based practice of clinical obstetrics. Expert clinical pearls add depth to these discussions and are written for busy practitioners—those “in the trenches.” To integrate all our content, the reader of one chapter may be referred to a different chapter that contains complementary content. This offers a more global understanding of a given topic.

To accomplish our teaching goals, the text has been updated with more than 3000 new literature citations through 2021. Many of the nearly 900 figures are new, and these graphs, sonograms, magnetic resonance images, photographs, photomicrographs, and data graphs are all in vivid color. Much of the original artwork was rendered by our own medical illustrators.

As before, we continue to incorporate contemporaneous guidelines from professional and academic organizations such as the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, the Society for Maternal–Fetal Medicine, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the National Institutes of Health, and other authoritative sources. Many of these data are distilled into nearly 100 tables, in which information has been arranged in an easy read-and-use format. In addition, several diagnostic and management algorithms are available to quickly guide practitioners. Although we strive to cite numerous sources and provide multiple evidence-based options for such management schemes, we also include our own clinical experiences drawn from the large obstetrical service at Parkland Hospital. We are convinced that these are disciplined examples of evidence-based obstetrics but quickly acknowledge that they do not constitute the sole method of management.

F. Gary Cunningham

Kenneth J. Leveno

Jodi S. Dashe

Barbara L. Hoffman

Catherine Y. Spong

Brian M. Casey

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