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SICOT e-Newsletter

Issue No. 47 - August 2012

Fellowship News

Report of the "SICOT meets SICOT" Fellowship at the University of Ghent, Belgium

Sarper Gursu
SICOT Associate Member - Istanbul, Turkey 

Being a fellow at the University of Ghent was definitely one of the best experiences of my life. The University of Ghent was founded in 1817 and today it has a very important role in Belgium’s higher education system. The Orthopaedics and Traumatology Department of the University is a legitimate leading institution with its worldwide known surgeons in the different specialties of Orthopaedics.

During my fellowship, I was totally impressed with the hospitality and the warm attitude of the members of the department. Besides this, Belgium and the city of Ghent, in particular the old medieval city centre, were lovely places.

Being interested in mostly knee and hip surgery, I spent most of my time in Ghent with the Knee and Hip teams. I saw more than one hundred operations in 6 weeks. In the area of knee surgery, I saw many interesting ligament reconstruction procedures using different techniques and materials, arthroplasties with various indications, meniscal replacements, cartilage procedures and revisions of these operations, some of which were completely new to me. I had the opportunity to see very difficult cases of hip revision arthroplasties, among which primary cases and also some hip arthroscopy cases. One thing was certain: whatever the operation, the hands doing it were for sure very experienced and talented.

The department was a real centre of science and research. I enjoyed the staff meetings which were held once every week and were very useful for me. I also had the chance to exchange some ideas with professors and benefit a lot from their knowledge, experience and sometimes advice.

As the department was an attractive centre for Orthopaedic Surgeons, I met many other fellows from different countries such as: Mexico, India, South Korea, and Taiwan, and the transaction between the fellows was also unforgettable.

I am very grateful to Prof Jan Victor, Head of the Orthopaedics Department in Ghent, and to Emeritus Prof Rene Verdonk for their hospitality and kindness to me. I thank Professor Peter Verdonk, from whom I learnt various knee procedures, and Prof Fredrick Almquist for his kindness to me. I also thank Prof Christophe Pattyn for allowing me into his team for some operations and Dr Emmanuel Audenaert for making this fellowship available to me. I personally would like to thank each and every resident in the Department as well as Mrs Christiaens and Mr Coucke for their priceless help and kindness to me.

Above all, I would like to thank SICOT for making such an unforgettable experience available to me. I can definitely say that I have benefitted a lot from this fellowship and I learned a great deal in Ghent thanks to this wonderful programme. Without this programme, it would not have been possible for me to go to Belgium and have this fantastic experience which has helped improve my knowledge of knee and hip surgery.

I thank SICOT again for this fellowship.