Book Review

Title: Soft Tissue Pain and Disability, 3rd. edition, 545 pages
Author: Rene Cailliet, MD
Publisher: F.A. Davis Company, Philadelphia, PA, 1996, (800) 323-3555
Price: $29.95
Category: Health care professional

This is the third edition of Dr. Cailliet's 1977 book which helped bring to the forefront the often overlooked and underemphasized area of soft tissues. Dr. Cailliet ranks with Janet Travell as one of the giants in the area of physical medicine.

Soft Tissue Pain and Disability is a well-referenced text designed for the health care professional who actively manages neuromusculoskeletal disorders. There are chapters on the lumbar spine, cervical spine, shoulder, elbow, wrist and hand, hip, knee, and foot and ankle. There are also chapters on the anatomical, physiological, and neurological concepts of pain in contractile and noncontractile tissues, and discussions on reflex sympathetic dystrophy, chronic fatigue syndrome, fibromyalgia, and temporomandibular joint (TMJ) disorders. The strongest aspects of this book are Dr. Cailliet's 448 unique illustrations, and his emphasis on the neurologic aspect of soft tissue dysfunction.

I was surprised and disappointed that Dr. Cailliet essentially ignored the thoracic spine. There was one page at the end of the cervical chapter on upper thoracic pain with no discussion on middle thoracic, rib, or intercostal dysfunction, all of which the average chiropractor commonly encounters.

I recommend this book to any chiropractor who desires a greater understanding of soft tissue pain and dysfunction. Although treatment and examination procedures are included, these are not the major focus of this work. The text will be best used in conjunction with other books that emphasize neuromusculoskeletal examination procedures: e.g., Stanley Hoppenfeld's Physical Examination of the Spine and Extremities; Warren Hammer's Functional Soft Tissue Examination and Treatment by Manual Methods.

With a price under $30, Soft Tissue Pain and Disability is an outstanding value and belongs in the library of clinicians whose practices are geared toward rapid elimination of neuromusculoskeletal dysfunction.

Dr. Andersen's Rating: 9.5


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