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[HMS] Surgery Clerkship   Tags: clerkships [hms], course_guides, primary clinical experience  

Electronic resource guide for HMS Surgery clerkship students, faculty and staff. Maintained by Julia Whelan
Last Updated: May 18, 2015 URL: Print Guide RSS UpdatesEmail Alerts

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Access Surgery-Your Source for Surgical Information

Access Surgery
Quick answers from trusted sources!

    Take a Board Review test from Surgery Review Illustrated and Schwartz's Principles of Surgery: Self-Assessment and Board Review, 8th Edition, then email the results.

Look up a symptom or disease in our Differential Diagnosis (DDx) tool.

Assess the extent of disease through Cancer Staging Tables.

Discover related Government Guidelines by clicking a pre-populated search box.

Launch a Customized Search for just videos, just images, or view full-site results.

Integrated drug database providing critical information on medication indications, dosages, contraindications, and drug classes.


Mastery of Surgery

Step-by-step descriptions of surgical procedures.
Note: ACS Surgery is available through all the teaching hospitals.

Cover Art
Fischer's Mastery of Surgery - Frank B. Pomposelli (Editor); Kirby I. Bland; Josef E. Fischer (Editor); Daniel B. Jones (Editor); Gilbert R. Upchurch (Editor)
ISBN: 9781608317400
Publication Date: 2011-12-20
Fischer's Mastery of Surgery, Sixth Edition, embraces a scope consistent with the broad training of a general surgeon, [with] extensive coverage of vascular surgery, common thoracic, breast, esophageal, endocrine, colorectal, gastric, pancreatic, liver, and biliary procedures.   Organized for ease of use, each procedural chapter reviews the essentials of diagnosis, anatomy, and pre-operative planning, but focuses most heavily on step-by-step depictions and descriptions of procedures. Each chapter concludes,..., with commentary that puts... material in a broad context and provides helpful critiques of the most recent literature. ...* Step-by-step guidance takes readers through each procedure, with tips and cautions from leading surgeons. * More than 3,400 illustrations offer a surgeon's-eye-view of the most advanced approaches. ... * Focus on evidence-based surgery reveals the science behind each approach. ...   * New full-color design throughout the text, including many new color images, help readers visualize and remember key anatomic features and surgical techniques.

Cover Art
ACS Surgery - Wiley W. Souba; Mitchell P. Fink; Gregory J. Jurkovic; Larry R. Kaiser; William H. Pearce; John H. Pemberton; Nathaniel J. Soper
Call Number: Available at Hosptial Libraries: Partners, BIDMC
ISBN: 9781550093995
Publication Date: 2007-11-01
ACS Surgeryis the first reference of general surgery to carry the name of the American College of Surgeons. Developed to help practicing surgeons make critical decisions on patient care, it is an evidence-based reference of surgical best practices from leaders in the field.....Evidence-Based Surgery – an important new chapter that discusses the profound impact that evidence-based medicine is having on current surgical practice Benchmarking Surgical Outcomes – another key chapter that describes current efforts to obtain comprehensive and accurate information about surgical outcomes.


Finding Information for Surgery

Finding evidence-based answers to clinical questions quickly and effectively

(printable version in pdf)

If you need:

An overview of a particular disease or condition, or background information

An ultrasound indicates your patient has gallstones (cholelithiasis). Where can you find an overview of this condition, including its etiology, when surgery is indicated,  alternate treatments?

How will lung resection effect my patient's physiology? What perioperative care should I be prepared to order?


Sabiston's Textbook of Surgery

Surgery:basic science clinical evidence

Surgical Oncology:
fundamentals evidence-based approaches

UpToDate (eCommons)

Review article through PubMed

Differential diagnosis decision support; diagnostic algorithms or pathways

You have a constellation of symptoms or suspect a certain diagnosis but need a differential structure.

I suspect my patient is in shock. What symptoms should I look for? What do I need to exclude? What tests do I need to order?

A 50 y.o. woman presents with angina, syncope upon exercise and dyspnea. Where can you find a DDX for these symptoms? When is surgery  indicated?



Dynamed DX
Ferri's Clinical Advisor

Patient assessment and preoperative management

Access Surgery, Access Medicine

Perioperative Medicine- just the facts

Why is this operation being done? indications? alternatives? timing? Evidence and rationale

Is surgery the best treatment for this condition? Do the benefits outweigh the risks?


 In patients with CNS lymphoma what is the most effective treatment: surgery, chemotherapy, or radiation?

What is the window of time during which angioplasty has better outcomes than thrombolysis in patients with acute MI?

PDQ database - for cancer topics

Cochrane Database

Consider terms such as “time factors”[mesh], “comparative study”
[Publication Type], “treatment outcome”[mesh], “surgery”[subheading]
Drug information focus on pain meds and antibiotics

What is the antibiotic of choice  for treating your diverticulitis patient while he is being evaluated for surgery?


Your patient is controlled on an IM opioid and must switch to an oral dosage form. Where can you find out how to calculate the equianalgesic dose?


Is it safe to use ketorolac in combination with NSAIDS for postoperative pain? What dose is best for geriatric patients? How often should it be given?

Micromedex – search keywords “antibiotic prophylaxis surgery” - consults w/ drugs of choice

John Hopkins ABX Guide:
diagnosis and treatment of infectious diseases

AHFS Drug Information

Clinical Pharmacology

Pain Management and Sedation  A Quick Reference written for the ER  

Principles and Practice of Pain Medicine - Warfield 
Synthesis of best-practice recomendations / Critically appraised topics / EBM

When are surgical interventions appropriate for a woman with chronic pelvic pain?

What are the pros and cons of removing orthopedic metal work in children?

What is the most safe and effective way to prevent venous thromboembolism in neurosurgery?

When is surgery indicated for depressed cranial fractures?

Cochrane Database


National Guidelines Clearinghouse

TRIP database

Quick access to evidence-based primary studies

Does operative delay increase mortality in hip fracture patients?

In elderly patients undergoing cholecystectomy does laparoscopic or open surgery have better outcomes?

Clinical queries- center menu in PubMed homepage

Dynamed (links)

PDQ (Physicians’ Data Query) for cancer topics
Information for patients

What do I need to do to prepare for a mammogram? What will happen during the procedure? (In Somali, by the way.)

Where can you find material to give a low literacy patient explaining his diabetic diet?

Countway Consumer Health Links

Health Information in Multiple Languages
Evidence-based information on alternative therapies

Is the gingko my patient is taking safe before surgery ? What is the wash-out period?

Your patient takes quercitin, 1000 mg daily, for prostatitis. You want to prescribe Cipro for postoperative colorectal prophylaxis. Are there any concerns with this combination?

Natural Medicines Comphrensive Database
(Note clinical management series on perioperative use)

Lastest Titles from Annals of Surgery

Listed below is are 5 titles from the latest Annals of surgery

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Reference & Education Librarian

Subject Guide

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Paul Bain
Contact Info
Countway Library
10 Shattuck St.
Boston MA 02115

Phone: 617.432.3236
Send Email

Evidence Updates


Below are the latest "evidence-updates" for General Surgery courtesy of BMJ and McMaster University . Each entry includes a analytical synopsis of the study and rating of the strengh of evidence and its relevance to clinical practice. To view the update, either register for an account (this lets you set your personal preferences) OR just click NO and you will go right to the text of the update.

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Please let us know if there's a book, journal or web resource you'd like to see in our collection.



Students have asked for information on surgical procedures that show the process step-by-step with explanations and anatomical fearures. Mastery of Surgery and ACS Surgery, texts used by residents are excellent sources. Also, be sure to look at the sources listed on this guide's anatomy page as well.

Cover Art
Atlas of Essential Procedures - Michael Tuggy; Jorge Garcia
ISBN: 9781437714999
Publication Date: 2010-11-05
Atlas of Essential Procedures, by Michael Tuggy, MD and Jorge Garcia, MD, makes it easy to perfect the 52 procedures most commonly performed in the primary care setting. Videos and step-by-step illustrations show you how to avoid complications and obtain the best results, and full-text online access makes it easy to reference this title from any computer. Master 52 essential techniques spanning all areas of your practice with separate sections on Dermatology, Obstetrics, Women's Health, Ultrasound, Urgent/Hospital Care, Gastroenterology, and Musculoskeletal. See what to do step by step with the aid of plentiful full-color illustrations accompanied by clear, practical captions. Observe real-world applications by watching online video demonstrations of 50 procedures including cryosurgery, electrosurgery, catheter placement, circumcision, and shoulder dislocation reduction as well as several basic ob/gyn procedures. Rapidly and conveniently reference the complete contents online at Precision in record time!


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