The American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons brought together over 10,000 orthopaedic surgeons in Las Vegas for the world’s biggest orthopaedic convention. I am delighted to report that internal bracing was a hot topic and I had the pleasure of meeting and sharing experiences with early adopters from around the world.
The Arthrex stand was bigger than ever yet was still packed with surgeons keen to know more about the latest innovations which could help their Practice and their patients. I was happy to share my experience at the booth punctuated with the occasional coffee at the elevated Arthrex cafe, which is symbolic of the company’s exponential growth.
Above: Enjoying a cappuccino with Stefan Krupp, head of Arthrex European
Danny Schmieding greeted and coordinated enquiries from surgeons based on both sides of the Atlantic. We are both seen doing our bit for international relations.
Above:Danny was busy facilitating surgeons at the Booth
Above: I was delighted to meet a distributor from China who informs me that there is enormous interest in the internal brace there.
Reinhold was as enthusiastic as ever in his support of surgical education and research. He remained emphatic that, “Internal bracing will have as profound an effect on orthopaedics as Charnley’s first hip replacement” – praise indeed.
Above: With Reinhold Schmieding
The distal extremity team reported 300% growth in internal brace use with ever expanding applications built on the success of the lateral ligament experience. Increasing use for trauma cases allows surgeons to address the deltoid and syndesmosis in a way that will restore anatomy and allow early mobilization.
Above: It always tickles a little to finally see your innovation on display
Above: Always a pleasure to meet Dr Tom Clanton, a world leading Foot and ankle surgeon from the Steadman Clinic in Colorado. He did some of the early research on the internal brace for ankle lateral ligament repair and did us the great honour of visiting our Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons during the Commonwealth Games and was awarded an Honorary Fellowship.
Alan at the shoulder booth presented the most recent innovation to simplify AC joint internal bracing. The offset guide we developed will give surgeons confidence during insertion. This will restore anatomy and allow early gentle mobilization. There was also a growing interest in its elbow applications especially after Dugas’ experience at the Andrews clinic.
Above: Holding Arthrex’s latest AC joint guide of which I was delighted to be part of the design team.
The interest in the ACL repair system with the internal brace is clearly growing. Its use for MCL, PCL and as an alternative to hamstring for the ALL generated a lot of discussion which was exciting but exhausting. The fact that we are now collecting results as far as 3 years out is providing some reassurance even to the most conservative of surgeons. Surgeons are increasingly recognizing the limitations of reconstruction and are looking for a more biological solution.
Above: Victor Kalman from Wilkington shares his experience with the internal brace and discusses future applications.
Above: Dr Paul Fleissner, a Paediatric Orthopaedic surgeon from Ohio, was delighted with the results of his first 48 ACL repairs with the internal brace. Ages ranged from 8 to 17 years.
Above: Dr Joel Boyd from Minneapolis discussed his experience with the internal brace and its potential to change our approach to complex multi-ligament knee injuries. He assured me he would try wearing a kilt when he visits Scotland
Above: It is always a pleasure to meet Dr Willem Van de Merwe one of the world’s leading knee surgeons from Cape Town SA. He is an innovative pioneer and key member of the ACL study group.
Above: It was a delight to meet Dr Forsbald a leading knee surgeon from Stockholm who is a football enthusiast and someone I had the pleasure of visiting at his Clinic over 15 years ago as part of a Visiting Fellowship. He and his colleague Dr Engstrom (the surgeon looking after the Swedish golf team) have invited me to their Stockholm Knee and Shoulder meeting in October to present our early experience with the internal brace- truly an honour.
Above: Thomas Lyuckx from Belgium explained that he has know internally braced over 10 ACL repairs and is keen to collaborate on future research and visit us in Scotland.
Above: Dr Raymond Sherman from Dakota had considerable experience successfully internally bracing collateral ligaments and was amazed by the results now being observed even in multi-ligament situations.
There was much more to Vegas and we visited Red Rock Canyon National Park on two wheels. The stunning scenery was a pleasant distraction from the heat. I joined an Australian, 2 Swedes and a Norwegian which added to the fun.
Above; There was much more to Vegas and we visited Red Rock Canyon National Park on two wheels. The stunning scenery was a pleasant distraction from the heat. I joined an Australian, 2 Swedes and a Norwegian which added to the fun.
For a full gallery of images from the trip scroll through the photos below
Trip to American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons Las Vegas 2015