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Surgical Technology: Research Guide

Information for researching surgical techniques


Use the Library Catalog to look for books on specific subjects. 

Note: It is unlikely that you will find entire books in the SCC Library that deal with a particular surgical procedure.  However, you may find books on topics such as heart disease or medical-surgical nursing that include descriptions of specific procedures.

Books that check out are on the 2nd floor of the library.

You'll find health and medical books in this Dewey Decimal area:

610 - 619

Reference books are on the 1st floor of the library. These include medical dictionaries, drug books, handbooks and statistical compilations. Here are some examples:

Stedman's Medical Dictionary book cover

Stedman's Medical Dictionary
(R610.3 STEDMAN)

 Current Medical Diagnosis book cover

Current Medical Diagnosis & Treatment
(R616.075 CURRENT)

P.D.R. book cover

 Physicians' Desk Reference: PDR 

American Health book cover

American Health: Demographics and Spending of Health Care Consumers
(R614.4273 AMERICA)

[Note: surgery statistics begin on p. 365]

Where to Start

Information Sources
for Surgical Technology

This Research Guide will help you find information on surgical procedures in books, library databases, and websites

Where to start?  Look for the resources on this guide with the four red stars ****.  They provide concise and basic information on many different surgical procedures.

Photo of medical team doing surgery

Open Heart Surgery

Source: NIH Image Bank


Help with Research

You can get help with your research by chatting online with a librarian (available 24/7), by emailing it to us (available 24/7), or by calling the SCC Library Reference Desk at (509) 533-8821 during our normal business hours.

Citation Guides
How to cite sources, plus other writing assistance information.

Can't Find It at SCC?

SFCC materials

When you search the Library Catalog you may find books and videos on your topic at SFCC.  Click the "Request Item" button to have the item sent to SCC for you to pick up.  If it's convenient to stop by the Falls Library, you'll just need your student ID card for check out.


The SCC Library participates in a cooperative of inland northwest libraries called WIN (Washington Idaho Network).  WIN includes Gonzaga University, Whitworth University, University of Idaho, among others.  Your student ID card can be used to check out books from any WIN library.  You can also click the WINborrow button in the Library Catalog to search for and request books.

Materials at other libraries

If you find a reference to a book or journal article that does not seem to be available at SCC, we can get it for you.  We'll locate the library that owns it and request an interlibrary loan.  Keep in mind that it could take ten days to two weeks for the item to arrive if it's in a library outside the Spokane area.

Careers & Employment

If you're looking for career and jobs information check out the Allied Health Careers research guide.

Library Databases

Library databases contain reliable information that is generally not available elsewhere on the Web. They can be found in the library databases section of the SCC Library homepage. Access from off-campus will require entering your student ID number.

CINAHL Complete
articles in nursing and allied health journals

Cochrane Library
evidence-based health care information, including reports on the effectiveness of different medical treatments and interventions

Gale Virtual Reference Library ****
collection of online encyclopedias, including Gale Encyclopedia of Surgery and Medical Tests

Health Reference Center Academic
articles, pamphlets and reference books

primarily a source of drug and disease information for healthcare professionals, also includes a database of easy-to-understand information for patients called CareNotes System

index to more than 5,500 magazines, journals and newspapers


American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons
click on Patient Information or use the Research link to find "facts and figures"

American College of Surgeons - Patient Education
provides patient and professional resources on surgery

Association of Surgical Technologists (AST)
not a good source for information on surgical procedures, but the site does include access to articles from professional newletters as well as articles from the current issue of the journal The Surgical Technologist

Google Image Search
you may find this useful for finding illustrations and photographs; be sure that the information is from a credible source and appropriately up-to-date

MedlinePlus ****
reliable, up-to-date health information from the National Institutes of Health and National Library of Medicine; includes surgery videos

National Center for Health Statistics - Inpatient Surgery
provides data for some procedures

PubMed / Medline
index to medical literature worldwide
Note: This is a huge database. It includes citations to journal articles from around the globe and in many different languages. You may want to limit to articles in English and those that are available "free full text."
This site includes a medical textbook called Surgical Treatment: Evidence-based and Problem Oriented which provides information on specific procedures.