Preface To The First Edition

Advanced Paediatric Life Support: The Practical Approach was written to improve the emergency care of children, and has been developed by a number of paediatricians, paediatric surgeons, emergency physicians, and anaesthetists from several UK centres. It is the core text for the APLS (UK) course, and will also be of value to medical and allied personnel unable to attend the course. It is designed to include all the common emergencies, and also covers a number of less common diagnoses that are amenable to good initial treatment. The remit is the first hour of care, because it is during this time that the subsequent course of the child is set.

The book is divided into six parts. Part I introduces the subject by discussing the causes of childhood emergencies, the reasons why children need to be treated differently, and the ways in which a seriously ill child can be recognised quickly. Part II deals with the techniques of life support. Both basic and advanced techniques are covered, and there is a separate section on resuscitation of the newborn. Part III deals with children who present with serious illness. Shock is dealt with in detail, because recognition and treatment can be particularly difficult. Cardiac and respiratory emergencies, and coma and convulsions, are also discussed. Part IV concentrates on the child who has been seriously injured. Injury is the most common cause of death in the 1-14 year age group and the importance of this topic cannot be overemphasised. Part V gives practical guidance on performing the procedures mentioned elsewhere in the text. Finally, Part VI (the Appendices) deals with other areas of importance.

Emergencies in children generate a great deal of anxiety - in the child, the parents, and in the medical and nursing staff who have to deal with them.We hope that this book will shed some light on the subject of paediatric emergency care, and that it will raise the standard of paediatric life support. An understanding of the contents will allow doctors, nurses, and paramedics dealing with seriously ill and injured children to approach their care with confidence.

Kevin Mackway-Jones Elizabeth Molyneux Barbara Phillips Susan Wieteska

(Editorial Board)

1993 xiii

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