The Arthrex Technology Symposium in Cape Town in December gave a welcome break from the European winter. I gave 5 lectures.
I always love visiting Cape Town and obviously December is the best time to visit this beautiful city.
My good friend, Mark Ferguson, I have known for many years. Once one of the leading world experts on soft tissue knee and shoulder surgery, he has moved into education with Arthrex and organised this congress more than a year ago. What he wants to do is to bring together innovations that Arthrex had demonstrated to him first as a surgeon as an innovator himself bring together leading surgeons to discuss new techniques and new developments in knee, shoulder and distal extremity trauma fixation.He assembled an amazing faculty, many of whom are now good friends and really put on a first class meeting.
My focus was on the knee and my contributions were in ACL repair in children, and I presented my results. And also the history of the anterolateral ligament to where we are today and how this ligament reconstruction continues to benefit our patients and reduce their re-rupture rate and improve their outcome. I also spoke about osteotomies around the knee and gave an overview and then engaged in a debate on the benefits of osteotomy over partial knee replacement.
My final lecture was a series of case studies and what I had decided to do in terms of talking to surgeons in the audience about the power of osteotomy is to highlight that three of the senior knee surgeons in the room had all undergone osteotomy surgery - that was Mark Ferguson who had had bilateral osteotomies (one of which I performed) and he is doing extremely well. The next, Anant Joshi, the father of arthroscopic surgery from India had an osteotomy done 17 years ago by Dror Paley. One of the interesting aspects of Anant's surgery was that Professor Paley was visiting India to do live surgery and did Anant's procedure in front of a large audience of Indian surgeons as a live surgical demonstration! He used, as always, his external fixation technique, and Anant achieved a fantastic correction which has stood the test of time and continues to allow him to be active to this day. Ziyad El Qirem who is a leading soft tissue shoulder and knee surgeon from Jordan and heads up education in these subspecialities as well as trauma, underwent an osteotomy under my care in May and we do our followup at meetings, and I was delighted to find out at the beginning of the meeting that he has now returned to normal function and is running and playing sport with a knee that feels normal which is again a great testament to the procedure. It was interesting that three surgeons in the room had undergone an osteotomy and all had achieved an excellent result and this I think was a powerful message.
It was a great but very short trip and I must congratulate Mark and the Arthrex team for putting on such a superb meeting.