Impressive!!! – the only word that comes to mind to describe the PAMS quarterly meeting organized and sponsored by the Polish-American Transplant Center at the University of Chicago on September 27th, 2015.
The recently built Center for Care and Discovery at the University of Chicago deliverers exactly what the name implies. World class surgeons and scientists develop and treat patients for whom there are not many options left in conventional medicine. A great example is the Pancreatic Islets transplant, developed by one of our own, Dr. Piotr Witkowski. The transplant prevents patients from developing diabetes after complete removal of the pancreas.
After a brief introduction, Dr. David Song, vice chair of the department of surgery, introduced us to the concept of “surgery as a contact sport”. The concept entails physicians from different specialties brainstorming together, sometimes just while in the locker room, on how to solve a difficult surgical puzzle. Dr. Song talked about using makorobots for orthopedic surgery, also about minimally invasive spinal surgery via small tubular ports that avoid debilitating incisions, and filming surgeries with a go-pro and then reviewing the “game tape”. He also talked about a major advancement in the ENT field: a cochlear implant for deaf infants to prevent developmental delay or atrophy of the brain. The 40 PAMS members who attended the meeting were given a tour of the new patient rooms. The rooms resemble a five star hotel! Some even include a beautiful view of down town Chicago.