President 2012 - Max Haerle
Dear EWAS members,
A few weeks ago I was elected your President of the “European Wrist Arthroscopy Society”.
It is certainly a great honour for me to represent such a talented and dynamic group of surgeons not only in Europe but worldwide.
But beyond this honour, I am really proud to lead this group of Hand Surgeons who have focused on carpal problems. This fascinating and evolving field in Hand Surgery has a undoubtedly received great impulse from wrist arthroscopy, which allows us see many things from a different point of view, that is the inside wrist view.
In April, 2005, when I was present at the founding session in (Guyancourt) Paris, I would have never imagined such a broad international success of our society even when I was always certain that wrist arthroscopy will have a brilliant future.
The society has grown rapidly to almost 600 members, and a multitude of wrist arthroscopy courses endorsed by EWAS are offered all around the world. The society is present and involved in the broader Hand Surgery Societies such as the FESSH or the IFSSH and has a well-recognized role in Hand Surgery today.
From my perspective, EWAS has come to a point where important changes await us. The teaching obligations of our society members have involved so many of us world wide, that we need to reorganise our strategies in order to recruit young surgeons to keep up with our teaching challenges.
An even more important goal is the consolidation of our peer reviewed data in wrist arthroscopy. Here our results will now move from short term results to mid and long term results, which will help in this consolidation process. It is my sincere hope that all strategies for publishing our research results will lead to a commonly excepted solution. We should take our time to make wise decisions, which serve first these goals. Before taking any decision on these opinions, all reasonable options should be carefully considered and the interest of the majority of our members should be kept in mind.
I am deeply convinced that wrist arthroscopy is an elegant and effective option to treat wrist disorders of all kinds. Its possibilities for the future are widely open and I cannot see the far end yet. On the other hand, we are still facing the fact, that many hand surgeons are not entirely convinced about the effectiveness and potential of wrist arthroscopy. These concerns, based on difficulties in achieving the technical skills, disappointing results, the cost of the equipment or other personal reasons should be taken seriously by our society. Superiority must be proven by surgical results and not by ignoring other people’s opinions. Therefore we must continue strongly to seek out opportunities for communication and cooperation with all our colleagues, especially hand surgeons who are not so skillful in wrist arthroscopy, taking them with us on our fascinating journey of experiences in Hand Surgery.