Testimonial and Report

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Department of Surgical Oncology

Madurai Medical College

Madurai, Tamil Nadu, India

Presently working as

Consultant Surgical Oncologist, NIMS Medicity, Trivandrum, Kerala

I would like to thank the Indian Association of Surgical Oncology (IASO) and the Society of Surgical Oncology (SSO) for choosing me as the IASO-SSO International Career Development Exchange (ICDE) Fellowship recipient of 2023. I would like to thank my teacher and mentor Prof. M. Ramesh (HOD, Department of Surgical Oncology, Madurai Medical College) and my guide Dr. M. Satishkumar for their support and guidance. I also thank Ms. Jacqueline Luna Montes (Manager, Membership & Global Programs) and Ms. Hannah Tong (Director of Academic Partnerships)of UNMC for organizing my visit and assisting me during the visit.

    My visit to the USA for the ICDE program consisted of the following parts:
  • SSO 2023 International Conference on Surgical Care in Boston
  • Institution visit to the University of Nebraska Medical Center

SSO 2023 International Conference on Surgical Care

The SSO International Conference on Surgical Care was held from March 22nd to 25th, 2023 at the Hynes Convention Center in Boston, MA with more than 1500 attendees. The symposium began on the 22nd March with the pre-conference workshops and the SSO Grant writing workshop (Research pre-meeting).The SSO International Reception was hosted by Dr Sandra Wong, the President of SSO on the evening of 22nd March to welcome the ICDE 2023 awardees from 11 societies (India, Brazil, Japan, Korea, Indonesia, Egypt, Mexico, Pakistan, Israel and Europe) around the world including myself. We were introduced to our respective mentors, SSO executives and members.

I was invited for the Global Good Morning Brunch by the SSO on 23rd March 2023. I met SSO President Dr. Sandra Wong, global academics coordinator and various international society office bearers and ICDE candidates. I was given the opportunity of a podium presentation for my research article on the 24th March, 2023 as part of Global Partner Poster Presentations which was moderated by Dr. Rupen Shah (Henry Ford Health) and Dr. Mark Reeves (Loma Linda University Health).

I attended many interesting lectures and sessions like the Trainee lounge on all three days of conference. It was a wonderful and enriching experience, where I could update myself with the latest technological developments and research from around the world. I’m sure this visit would help me refine my practice.

Institutional Visit: As part of the ICDE Program, I visited the:

Fred & Pamela Buffet Cancer Centre, University of Nebraska Medical Centre
Dates: 27th March to 31st March 2023
Mentor: Prof. Chandrakant Are

I visited the Surgical Oncology Department at UNMC. My mentor was Prof. Chandrakant Are, Professor of Surgical Oncology at UNMC. Dr. Are had made Ms. Hannah Tong the point of contact for my visit to UNMC as observer. She had emailed me regarding the vaccination prerequisites 3 weeks before my travel. I had responded with the appropriate details on my vaccination status. She had assisted me with the flights to Omaha and had arranged my accommodation in Omaha as well. She picked me up from the airport, when I arrived in Omaha on the 26th of March and took me to the accommodation which was quite conveniently located near the medical centre.

On Day 1 of the program (27/03/23), she took me to the University of Nebraska Medical Centre and helped me in completing the joining formalities and procuring my ID card. She then gave a tour of the hospital, including, the library. She then took me to meet Dr. Are and formally introduced me to him. A schedule was prepared by him for the week post discussion with Dr. Jayakarthik – fellow ICDE recipient and me. After that he took us to the operation theatre and library. That evening, we went to Omaha’s Henry Doorly Zoo & Aquarium.

On Day 2 (28/03/23), I met Dr. Are at 7 am and he took us to the operation theatre and introduced me to Dr. Jamie Foster. We observed his surgery, post which we had a good discussion on melanoma, GI metastases and it’s management strategies in America and India. In the afternoon we attended the pancreas multi-disciplinary clinic and listened to discussions on various cases.

On Day 3 (29/03/23), I met Dr. Are at 6.30 am and he took us to the GI Surgery mortality meeting and seminar. It was an excellent opportunity to see first-hand and understand how an audit and mortality meeting presentation is made. I gained insights on key management protocols in the department and hospital. By 9.30 am we went to operation theatre and observed the surgery done by Dr. Jamie Foster. It was a case of Carcinoma ovary post chemotherapy. He explained the steps of peritonectomy and HIPEC.

On Day 4 (30/03/23), We went to UNMC, Village Pointe which is 25 kms away from the UNMC main campus. We met Dr. Madhuri Are, an interventional pain management consultant and witnessed various pain management techniques done for cancer patients. In the afternoon we attended the GI tumor board and listened to various cases presented.

On Day 5 (31/03/23), We went to operation theatre in the morning and spent the day with Dr. Andrew witnessing multiple procedures along with him. That evening, I took my flight to Washington D.C. and back to India.

My observership at UNMC was an insightful experience and the key takeaway for me was on how a good tumor board discussion could improve the quality of treatment. My mentor, Dr. Chandrakant Are supported and guided me throughout the week. It gave me an opportunity to witness firsthand the quality of treatment and patient care provided in the US.

Both the experiences have served to broadened my knowledge and skills which will undoubtedly help me in my future endeavours.

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