What I’ve learnt on my second day at #SSAT19

Today has been an intense and long day at #SSAT19: plenary sessions, Foundation awards, presidential address, editorial board meeting, etc.

However, these are the things that come to my mind when I try to recall what I’ve learnt:

The SSAT must be transformed to meet new challenges and generate new opportunities for academic surgeons.

Obesity and bacteria are clearly linked. In mice.

IBD is linked to microbiota.

Bacteria have refined their genetic code for longer than humans. They may outsmart us.

Chemotherapy toxicity may be influenced by intestinal bacteria.

Microbiome may play a role in pancreatic cancer.

John Alverdy is THE expert surgeon in microbiome.

We must solve complex problems because the easy ones are already fixed (Marc Nivet)

Residents and younger surgeons include their Twitter handles in their presentations.

In order to achieve transformation one must challenge his/her biases, get comfortable with being uncomfortable, interrupt the usual, and be curious.

What I’ve learnt today at #SSAT19

On the first day of the #SSAT19 meeting, two of the most important take-home messages came from a a retired surgeon, Prof. Christopher Ellison:

  1. You’re only old once,
  2. You never retire too early.

Robin McLeod has reminded us that the role of women in surgery is… the same as it is for a man.

Alberto Ferreres has pointed out that surgery is a moral practice, guided by three values: self-sacrifice, altruism and unselfishness.

Sachiyo Nomura has showed us how it is possible to manage a perfect balance between workload and well being in Japan.

Finally, Bruno Silverstein has reflected on the moral injuries that surgery inflicts on surgeons and, subsequently, lead to burntout.

Jeff DeGraff en la SSAT

Ayer 17 de Mayo, la conferencia Doris y John L. Cameron del encuentro anual de la SSAT durante la Digestive Disease Week estaba dedicada a la innovación.

El encargado de la presentación era Jeff DeGraff: Leading Innovation in the Age of Health Care Transformation. Evidentemente, el título me hacía presuponer que resultaría de mi interés. Y no me defraudó.

DeGraff mezcla sus conocimientos de economía con una puesta en escena radical. Una de sus primeras frases fue «La innovación sólo se produce cuando tu vida es una mierda». Y a partir de ahí fue un martillo pilón destrozando los «mantras» y las «vacas sagradas» de la sanidad y su pretendida actividad innovadora.

Sus recomendaciones son variadas, como no pensar linealmente, innovar en los extremos de la campana de Gauss, mezclar creatividad, competición, colaboración y control, asumir que la innovación es momentánea…

Para que os podáis hacer una idea, os dejo uno de sus vídeos.