„Aortic Live 2“ International heart and vascular specialists convene in Essen

After the success of 2012 with over 250 delegates, the Congress Presidents, Prof Dr Heinz Jakob, Prof Dr Raimund Erbel and Prof Dr Wilhelm Sandmann expect this year’s „Aortic Live 2“ to attract even higher numbers of specialists in cardiac and vascular surgery and related inner medicine disciplines of cardiology and angiology. To this end, they have worked with the organisers, the West German Heart Centre in Essen, to extend the programme significantly this time around: As well as around 20 live broadcasts of operations on the entire aorta, delegates will have the opportunity to learn more about the latest surgical, catheter-based and minimally invasive procedures, with almost 40 presentations and round-table discussion groups.

„The focus of this year’s event – alongside the latest methods of treatment for various aortic disorders – is clearly to encourage exchanges between the heart and vascular surgeons“, explains Prof Dr Heinz Jakob, Director of the Thoracic and Cardiovascular Surgery Clinic at the West German Heart Centre in Essen, part of UH Essen. „Despite great progress, the two disciplines have taken different paths in the past 20 years, experience both disciplines can benefit from. One example is the fact that patients‘ disorders are now considered in a more holistic manner than before. As a result, we have this year again invited both heart and vascular surgeons to the event and are offering lectures in both disciplines. We’ve been able to secure the services of over 80 internationally renowned experts for this“, Prof Jakob continues. In selecting the 20 live surgeries that can be followed in 3D in the main auditorium on site and also worldwide in a variety of locations, the team has taken special care to ensure a fair mix of both disciplines. For the first time, international surgeons have also agreed to live transmission beyond their immediate vicinities: „We’re delighted to be able to provide not just live broadcasts of the Essen procedures but also satellite broadcasts straight to Essen from Philadelphia, Beijing and Marseille“, said private lecturer Dr Matthias Thielmann, a member of Prof Jakob’s organizing team. „This way, our delegates are up front and close both visually and acoustically to the operation while it’s going on, and they’re able to interact with the surgeons and thus benefit from their methods.“ In addition, it will be possible to follow the meeting live from anywhere in the world via the Internet, to ask questions and discuss the experts‘ experience in treating various aortic disorders.

Attractive programme for young heart and vascular surgeons

As well as exchanging information on latest treatment methods, the congress will offer young doctors, especially the opportunity to train further in both theory and practice and expand their personal networks: „We’ll be using so-called ‚wet labs‘ to allow young doctors, for example, to practise certain treatment techniques on simulators under the watchful eye of experienced surgeons“, explains Prof Jakob. This offering was extremely well received in 2012. As a result, the organisers decided to dedicate more timetable space to this item: „At ‚Aortic Live 2‘ we’ll be offering a total of 13 wet labs on a very wide variety of subject areas. This will range from treating a diseased aortic valve and torn aortae through to the use of stents (blood vessel supports) to help prevent, among other things, occlusion of the coronary arteries and in the aorta and its exits by supporting outgrowths known as aneurysms or dissections, i.e. ‚internal ruptures'“, says Prof Dr Raimund Erbel, Director of the Clinic for Cardiology.
In addition to this, until 15th August the young doctors will be able to register for a ‚Poster Prize‘ using their own insights and ideas on new treatment methods. „Here, a panel of five experienced heart and vascular surgeons will assess the ideas presented on posters in the main auditorium. The best of them will recive awards – 1,000 euros for the winner and 500 euros for the runner-up“, explains Prof Jakob. „One benefit is that young professionals will be able to make presentations to seasoned colleagues. Another is that, perhaps, world experts might even discover a new approach that could revolutionise the way a particular disease is treated“, adds Prof Wilhelm Sandmann, Vascular Surgeon and also President of the Congress. „We’re excited to see how many junior doctors will attend this year – we think the programme offers a good incentive for coming along“, says the organizing team led by senior physicians Drs Daniel Wendt, Konstantinos Tsagakis, Matthias Thielmann and Jaroslav Benedictine confidently.

The programme will also feature an extensive peripheral exhibition in which renowned manufacturers and suppliers will present their cardiac and vascular surgery products. „Here, visitors to ‚Aortic Live 2‘ will have the opportunity to consult over a cup of coffee on the latest technical developments. Of course, this exhibition also provides an opportunity to exchange views on the stands with international colleagues about the latest trends and their own experiences. Overall, we’re confident our colleagues will experience a really interesting congress offering a broad view of current trends in the field of cardiac and vascular surgery“, Prof Jakob concludes.

Notes to newsroom colleagues:
Media representatives are very welcome to attend „Aortic Live 2“ and will have the opportunity to attend the operation transmissions or take part in a wet lab. If interested, please contact Petra Courvoisier, Telephone +49 (0) 0201 723-4901,
e-mail: petra.courvoisier@uk-essen.de.

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