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Communication and teamwork are keys to quality patient care. Selection of appropriate diagnostic techniques, specifically the new, often costly imaging techniques, is critical in today's era of health-care reform. Over the years I have written numerous textbooks devoted to enhancing the communication and understanding between radiologists and orthopedic surgeons. Thus, for all of these years my focus has been on what the referring physician needs to know. However, what about the other members of the health-care team?

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This text, Musculoskeletal Imaging Handbook: A Guide for Primary Practitioner, takes communication a step further than my past efforts. The text is authored by a nationally recognized orthopedic physical therapist, Lynn McKinnis, PT, OCS, and a well-known musculoskeletal radiologist, Michael Mulligan, M.D. The ten-chapter text focuses on appropriate imaging approaches to common musculoskeletal conditions seen by practicing physicians, physical therapists, and physician assistants every day. Major emphasis is placed on state-of-the-art imaging techniques.

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What are the advantages and limitations of each modality? This knowledge is critical to all involved in patient care. The authors use algorithms and tables to provide evidence-based research for selection of the most appropriate imaging for common musculoskeletal problems. I cannot think of a better approach regardless of one's position on the health-care team.

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George Bernard Shaw once stated that “the single biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place.”

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This Handbook definitely bridges the communication gap that so frequently occurs when selecting the most appropriate imaging approach to musculoskeletal disorders. The content bridges the gap for the entire multidisciplinary health-care team.

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Thomas H. Berquist, MD, FACR

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