See the Present, Future of CT Surgery

Members of the Program Task Force met in August to plan the educational sessions for the STS 53rd Annual Meeting, January 21–25 in Houston.

Members of the Program Task Force met in August to plan the educational sessions for the STS 53rd Annual Meeting, January 21–25 in Houston.

For the first time since 1973, the STS Annual Meeting will be held in Houston, home to award-winning restaurants, nightlife, museums, and NASA’s Johnson Space Center.

The meeting will be held January 21-25, 2017, at the George R. Brown Convention Center. It kicks off with a full day of new and exciting technology at STS/AATS Tech-Con on Saturday, followed by Annual Meeting programming from Sunday through Wednesday.

“The STS Annual Meeting is the epicenter of cardiothoracic surgery,” said STS President Joseph E. Bavaria, MD. “The meeting will be packed with interactive learning on hot topics, such as Mycobacterium chimaera infections related to heater-cooler devices. We’ll also explore practice management, work-life balance, and quality improvement issues that impact STS members on a daily basis.”

All members of the cardiothoracic surgery team will find educational programming relevant to everyday practice. Invited speakers and debates will be woven among scientific abstracts and surgical videos.

The offerings for adult cardiac surgery include sessions on arrhythmias, mechanical circulatory support devices, the thoracic aorta, coronary artery disease, and mitral valve and aortic valve diseases.

“We have multiple abstracts on catheter-based therapy for aortic valve and mitral valve surgery, open and endovascular management of the aortic arch, and the descending as well as the ascending aorta,” said Workforce on Annual Meeting Chair Wilson Y. Szeto, MD. “New technology on rapid deployment aortic valve replacement platforms also is on the program.”

For general thoracic surgeons, expect several presentations about minimally invasive surgery, long-term outcomes for cancer patients, and real-world tips that you can take home and apply in your practice.

“Something that’s going to be a major focus at the meeting is the question of robotic surgery versus other types of minimally invasive surgery—does it really provide any benefits, or is it just another way of doing things through small incisions?” said Joseph B. Shrager, MD, Co-Chair of the Surgical Symposia Task Force. “Sublobar resection for very small lung nodules also is going to be an important topic.”

For the pediatric congenital heart surgery sessions, three loosely based themes have emerged. “We have a session focusing on issues around newborns and neonatal surgery, one on how patient risk factors, such as chromosomal abnormalities, affect outcomes after surgery, and one on advanced issues facing older children and teenagers,” said Jonathan M. Chen, MD, Co-Chair of the Surgical Symposia Task Force.

Late-breaking abstracts have returned to the meeting program this year, and will feature exciting clinical trials, clinical registry research, innovative clinical and basic science investigations, and quality improvement projects.

Tuesday morning’s Early Riser Health Policy Forum will focus on the Merit-Based Incentive Payment System—the revised fee-for-service payment model that will affect most physicians, including STS members. It also will cover alternative payment models, bundled payments for coronary artery bypass grafting procedures, and data collection efforts that could impact surgical payments in the future.

The Patient Safety Symposium, also on Tuesday, will look at the causes, prevalence, and consequences of work-related stress and professional burnout among health care providers, along with implementable strategies to recognize burnout and mitigate its impact. (See related article.)

There’s much more on the agenda. View the Advance Program and register for the meeting at at the STS Annual Meeting website.

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