The author states in the preface of the book that "this is, quite frankly, a basic and introductory book intended principally to acquaint the student with the specialty...." Dr. Gartland's book is well designed for this specific purpose.
The first half of the book is devoted to chapters on topics such as fracture management, congenital orthopaedic deformities, epiphyseal disorders, bone tumors, etc. In the second half of the book the common orthopaedic disorders are discussed as they occur in the various regions of the body.
The jargon and specific terminology of the orthopaedic surgeon are carefully defined throughout the book and in a glossary at the end. Terms such as varus, valgus, arthrodesis, pronation, and equinus, which are often so very confusing to those not acquainted with orthopaedics, are added to the vocabulary of the reader. Reference lists follow each chapter. The lists are short and do not always