Neurosurgery Practice Questions and Answers
Edited by Mark Shaya, Cristian Gragnaniello and Remi Nader.
Publication Date: August 2016
Available from Thieme.
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Before going onto to discuss this Q&A book in any detail, I should confess that I have not quite got round to attempting all 805 questions, and I have not sat the FRCS (SN).
Like other Q&A books, this selection of questions is a good way to test for gaps (or craters) in one’s neurosurgical knowledge. It covers a wide range of topics, from basic science to anatomy and radiology. The explanations in the answers section are a little limited and I often had to resort to another source to work out why I had gone so badly wrong. The questions are written in a clear format without too much in the way of wording trickery designed to catch you out. There are some picture questions e.g. radiology/path which helps to break things up.
Speaking to people who have sat the FRCS(SN) exam and comparing this book with the sample MCQs on the JCIE website, it would seem there is a bit of a difference. While this book is good at testing core knowledge (albeit heavy on neurology and skull base triangles), it lacks the applied feel of the UK exams, where questions are buried within a clinical scenario.
To summarise, it is a good MCQ book to aid more focused revision, but may not be a true reflection on the UK FRCS exam.
Neurosurgery Trainee, Edinburgh