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SICOT e-Newsletter

Issue No. 66 - March 2014

Fellowship News

Report of the 'SICOT meets SICOT' Fellowship Programme at the Fondazione IRCCS Policlinico San Matteo, University of Pavia

Karampinas Panagiotis
SICOT Associate Member - Athens, Greece

It is with great pleasure that I report my experience as a Hip and Knee Reconstruction Fellow at IRCCS Policlinico San Mateo, University of Pavia, from 3 November to 1 December 2013.

I received with great pleasure the notification that I had been accepted for the 2013 'SICOT meets SICOT' Visiting Fellowship. I reached Pavia on 3 November 2013, after a quick flight from Athens to Milan, and I moved into the accommodation on the University campus which was arranged for me by the Orthopaedic Department. At this point I would like to thank Dr Stefano Marco Paolo Rossi. I deeply thank him for the warm welcome and for providing me with all the necessary directions for my stay. The next day I met Prof F. Benazzo and he accepted me in his team with great pleasure and enthusiasm. He was very friendly and I loved working and following him in every activity in the department.

Every working day started with a morning meeting, where details about patients admitted from the emergency department the day before, patients’ nurses in the department, and the operating theatre schedule of the day were discussed in the presence of all consultants and ward nurses. I started attending the theatres with Prof F. Benazzo immediately. I had an opportunity to scrub-in as assistant in most of his cases and I was allowed to actively participate in each surgery. I also had the fortune to be present during the visit of different surgical teams from around the world, such as Japan and the United States, and hear him giving guidelines and technique tips on THA and TKA Revisions to very experienced surgeons.

Together with Prof F. Benazzo, there are 3 consultants whom I worked with in the Hip and Knee unit, Dr G. Zanone, Dr C. Pavesi and Dr Stefano M.P. Rossi. I was fortunate enough to operate with each one of them. The hospital, being a referral care centre, deals with a wide range of Hip, Knee and Sports Medicine disorders. The volume of cases operated here was really great. During my four-week stay, I participated in a total of 58 cases and was mainly interested in Primary Total Knee (TKA) and Total Hip Arthroplasty (THA), Revision TKA and THA, Unicompartmental Knee Replacement and Anterior Cruciate Ligament Reconstruction. I could assist in a wide range of these cases and accumulate great experience by the methods and techniques applied. I particularly enjoyed the teamwork of the operating theatre members and I was fascinated by the systematic preoperative and intraoperative planning of the operations. I also followed up the patients in the wards and in the outpatient visits, supervised and taught by Prof F. Benazzo. The nursing and paramedical staff were committed and contributed significantly to the care of the patients. It was a pleasure working with Prof F. Benazzo and he made every challenging surgery look seemingly simple. I was truly impressed with his technique and surgical outcome. Operating with him was an enjoyable experience, as he takes a keen interest in explaining every step of the surgery and taught me some great tricks.

I also assisted a number of cases with Dr G. Zanon and learned from him during some interesting Anterior Cruciate Ligament Reconstructions. He taught me some of his tricks and I loved his techniques, specifically the Double-Bundle Medial Patellofemoral Ligament Reconstruction with a Single Patellar Tunnel.

Finally, I wish to express my gratitude and appreciation for the hospitality, extended cooperation, friendship and constant support of Prof F. Benazzo during my stay. I will really miss the wonderful time I spent in Pavia. Overall, it was a great experience and I would thoroughly recommend this fellowship to my colleagues. I sincerely thank SICOT for providing me with this great opportunity.