Advances in Anatomic Pathology:
Baptist Hospital Miami, FL
Title: Advances in Surgical Pathology: Lung Cancer
Editors: Cagle PT, Allen TC
Authors: Cagle PT, Allen TC, Dacic S, Kerr KM, Beasley MB
Publishers: Wolters Kluwer/Lippincott Williams & Wilkins
Organization: By overview, histopathology, imaging, molecular pathology, pre-neoplasia, staging
Readability: Excellent straight forward writing
Pictures: Excellent, including imaging studies
Strengths: Organization, accessibility
There seem to be more and more new and excellent textbooks in surgical pathology every day and more and more new editions of standard textbooks that seem to have been updated previously only yesterday. With such a breadth of competition, authors of new textbooks need to define a specific useful niche for their texts. The editors of this new series have done just that. As they state in their preface, “In order to remain a viable member of the patient care team, the pathologist must keep up with growing knowledge in traditional subjects as well as in new areas of expertise such as molecular testing.” Although there are other uses, the authors of this text specifically highlight the utility of this volume for participating in multidisciplinary tumor boards. To me, the contents of this volume is particularly well suited to address not only the traditional pathologic questions that arise in such a conference (is it adenocarcinoma, is it squamous cell, why or why not?) but also the use of newer modalities that many pathologists at least remain responsible for even if they themselves do not actually perform the test (ie, molecular tests). As such, the authors have successfully defined a very specific and very useful niche for this series.
The organization of the text is straightforward, and includes overview, histology, imaging, molecular pathology, preneoplasia, and staging. The images are all excellent in full color and quite sharp. Although cytology is also included, more images of cytology might be useful, especially considering how often cytology is the only material available for diagnosis in lung cancer. Imaging includes not only standard imaging techniques such as computed tomography and positron emission tomography, but also confocal microscopy and optical imaging as well as radiofrequency ablation. Interestingly, there is relatively little on the surgical approaches to lung cancer, suggesting that this area may already be mature. In contrast, a full discussion about the importance and limitations of different approaches to molecular testing that are now standard (epithelial growth factor receptor) and those tests that may be of value in the future is included.
The bottom line is that not only have the authors created a beautiful first volume to their new series, they have also aimed it squarely at the increasingly diverse needs of pathologists as they try to remain up to date in areas that are beyond the traditional role of pathologists in the past. This is an excellent first volume of this series, and a textbook I plan to take with me to my next lung cancer tumor board conference.
© 2011 Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, Inc.