I was honoured to be invited to be on the faculty of the prestigious annual meeting held in Hamburg, Germany with the theme of: Shaping the Beautiful Breast in Complex Breast Surgery. The team certainly made me work hard whilst I was there, with several presentations, panel discussions and moderating the closing session – which meant keeping the 250 delegates from 25 countries engaged and entertained as I challenged the panel of expert international surgeons on the stage with me, and also challenged the delegates themselves!
There is never a time at a meeting such as this when I haven’t learnt new things. This meeting was no exception! I think the main learning points for me were:
- Hearing of an alternative way to approach the tuberous breast – from the renowned Dennis von Heimburg, from Frankfurt
- Hearing about the very latest research into ALCL from Anand Deva from Sydney. It has confirmed that the implant surface and manufacturer is very closely related to the cases of this very rare type of breast lymphoma. Fortunately Mentor implants, which are the main brand of implants that I use, have the lowest rates of association (1 in 60,631) compared with other textured implants
- It was confirmed that the implant preparation solution that I use is the best that we have to date (which was of course very reassuring)
- A novel idea to demonstrate what effect a mastopexy can have was illustrated by one of the faculty members – using Micropore tape to literally tape up the breasts to approximate their future position. The thing I liked about this, is it provided a very good communication tool in cases where the addition of an implant may be needed (as it demonstrates that the upper pole of the breast is not filled long term)
- Finally, a modification of the technique I use in massive weight loss patients when performing a breast lift was shown which gave some very nice results. Something I will be sure to try in the appropriate patient.
I await the formal feedback regarding how my talks were received, but everyone was very complimentary at the time…I hope all will be confirmed, as I thoroughly enjoyed being part of the expert panel, and was flattered to be up there beside some of the great names in breast Plastic Surgery.