The STS 52nd Annual Meeting Finally Begins

Mark S. Allen, MD

Welcome to the STS 52nd Annual Meeting! I’m thrilled to welcome you to Phoenix for this preeminent educational event in cardiothoracic surgery.

The STS Workforce on Annual Meeting has put together an outstanding program that will provide you with knowledge and skills that you can take back home and put to use right away. Over the next 5 days, you’ll experience thought-provoking lectures from renowned faculty and guests, exciting hands-on learning, an abundance of networking opportunities, and a chance to view the latest products and services in the specialty.

New offerings at the 52nd Annual Meeting include a how-to session featuring intraoperative videos of common cardiac surgical procedures and a session about the resuscitation of patients who arrest after cardiac surgery. Additionally, STS/AATS Tech-Con 2016 has sharpened its focus on new devices and procedures that have yet to be approved by the US Food and Drug Administration, but could be available (with FDA approval) within 1-3 years from the time of presentation.

A number of sessions will feature perspectives from international experts. A Monday session from STS, the Canadian Association of Thoracic Surgeons, and the Canadian Society of Cardiac Surgeons will provide actionable information on the topics of online physician marketing, “physician review” websites, and the application of three-dimensional printing in cardiothoracic surgery. Also on Monday, the International Symposium & Reception will focus on the viability and ethics of employing new technologies to treat rheumatic heart disease, endocarditis, and mitral valve disease in various parts of the world.

STS and the European Association for Cardio-Thoracic Surgery will host a session on specialized aortic valve-sparing surgery and aortic valve repair on Tuesday. Another Tuesday session, with the European Society of Thoracic Surgeons, will feature controversial issues in general thoracic surgery, including the management of high-risk patients diagnosed with early stage lung cancer, solitary pulmonary nodules/ground glass opacities, achalasia, and paraesophageal hernias.

I am very pleased to welcome two outstanding guest speakers at the General Session on Tuesday morning. The Thomas B. Ferguson Lecture will be given by former NASA astronaut and emergency medicine physician Scott Parazynski, MD, who—in addition to logging a total of 8 weeks in space—has summited Mount Everest and invented a number of medical devices and other technologies for life in extreme environments. The C. Walton Lillehei lecturer will be Gary Taubes*, an award-winning science journalist who has challenged conventional wisdom regarding diet, weight gain, and heart disease with his New York Times-bestselling books Good Calories, Bad Calories and Why We Get Fat.

You can read about these presentations and more in your Program Guide and Abstract Book—two publications that you will find invaluable for planning your schedule in Phoenix and also for reference when you’re back home.

On behalf of the Society’s leadership and the 52nd Annual Meeting Program Planning Committee, thank you for joining us here in Phoenix. Welcome to the meeting!

Mark S. Allen, MD

STS President

*For more information on this speaker, please visit