Another hernia “summit” in a pretty nice place

Hernia Discussion Forums Hernia Discussion Another hernia “summit” in a pretty nice place

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    • #32233
      Good intentions

      These meetings that aren’t tied to the large professional societies are interesting. The recent one in Costa Rica seemed focused on physician welfare. Here’s a new one conjured up by Dr. Novitsky’s institution, the Columbia Hernia Center. They are kind of buried in the literature though, it was hard to find out who organized it, or even why. The skiing should be excellent.

      The usual big names are presenting. One presentation caught me by surprise. Dr. Felix, the surgeon who claims a major piece of the development of laparoscopic mesh implantation for inguinal hernia repair, is the presenter for pure tissue repair. It’s hard to imagine a more clearly defined conflict of interest. Pretty amazing, especially considering that Dr. Novitsky is the head of the organizing institution. I don’t understand the logic. Who made that decision?

      Anyway, the schedule title’s look interesting. I wonder if they will make videos available like SAGES used to do.

    • #32234
      Good intentions

      Here is the web site of the organization running the show –

      And a link to the Columbia Hernia Center, who apparently hired CineMed to do the work.

      You can’t find the word “comprehensive” used until you get to a different page. I assume it’s them but there’s no link on the Summit page site. Interesting how these meetings pop up but you can’t really see who is behind them.

    • #32235
      Good intentions

      When I click on the link I see that Columbia Comprehensive Hernia Center comes right up. So, not hidden like I suggested. They do seem to have changed their name though, adding the word Comprehensive. You have to assume that the two names are for the same institution. I guess if you’ve been attending the summit for 13 years you already knew.

      Apparently, the Center is part of the Columbia University system. Always good to know how an organization works.

    • #32236
      William Bryant

      Looks very corporate.

      There is Dr Felix and Dr Chen on tissue and shouldice at least.

    • #32497

      I would say the Hernia Summit by Dr Novitsky is probably the best hernia meeting of each year. It is a skiing theme and very family friendly, which is nice to see for a surgical meeting. The scientific sessions therefore start at 6am and the room is packed. This is because the topics are the most impactful and insightful of any meeting.

      Dr. Novitsky has been running this since before he started his new position in Columbia Hospital.

      Dr. Felix, as you may know, was trained during the tissue-based repair. So he is an excellent surgeon to discuss this. Even more relevantly, his professor was Dr. Nyhus, who of course invented the Nyhus tissue based repair. This was the open precursor to the laparoscopic TEP inguinal hernia repair. Dr. Felix is a master innovator in all things laparoscopic, not just inguinal hernia. And we surgeons are not single hit ponies. We are able to invent one operation type but still perform others.

      • This reply was modified 1 year ago by drtowfigh.
    • #32501
      Good intentions

      Thanks for the reply Dr. Towfigh. I think that the innovation urge might be part of the overall problem with hernia repair problems. In the “tech” world, “new” is almost always assumed to be better. New markets to exploit. New products are heavily marketed and sold so that shareholders can make money.

      But in healthcare, this urge to invent new products seems to lead to products being developed first, then homes for the products being sought out. New mesh materials, robotic methods, laparoscopy tools, etc. TelaBio mesh ventral hernia studies being used to expand in to inguinal hernia repair (31 patient studies…enough?). New techniques being developed when the new product has problems (ReBAR for Ovitex mesh). But the patient ends up as just a vessel to transport the new product to market. You are celebrating Dr. Felix as an innovator. But not a physician. You’ve also fallen in to the trap of assuming that past pedigree has value.

      The value is in the results. You could argue that Dr. Felix has led a whole generation of surgeons down the primrose path of mesh implantation. He will retire eventually, leaving a large mess behind him.

      My point was that, overall, it makes no sense to have a mesh promoter discuss pure tissue repairs. There is an inherent bias present. He has already shown it in his past presentations implying that people with chronic pain from mesh just need to toughen up. His past work makes it obvious that he is a poor choice to cover pure tissue repair, since pure tissue is the natural opponent to mesh repairs. The appearance alone is enough that a rational person would not choose him. His name and “pure tissue repair” do not belong together. For someone of Dr. Novitsky’s reputation, it is surprising.

      Even the SAGES meetings are focused on “tech”. Where is the focus on the patient?

      Somehow this organization that used to be focused on patient welfare has become a Tech Conference. Bizarre.

      SAGES 2023 Annual Meeting Emerging Technology Abstract Submission Information

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