Osteoarthritis of the ankle and deformity: a difficult case, a fascinating challenge.

When I think back to yesterday, I find myself happy.
The reason? A long and important “routine” day.
My routine is made of research, treatment and surgery of foot and ankle diseases. I love my job and the time I devote to it, it taught me that the line which separates mediocrity from skill is reproducibility. Doing my best every day, replicating again and again specific operations until you get familiar with the techniques that allow you to resolve very different cases as best you can.
Yesterday I was called to operate in Belgium – specifically in Noord Limburg – as a guest of Dr. Classens.

The project I joined is called Reverse Surgeon To Surgeon; a program that allows me to offer my experience in foot and ankle prosthetics, helping colleagues who require specific expertise, with the aim to share my know-how as much as possible, for the benefit of other colleagues and surgical teams.
Dr. Classens teamed up with me to operate a patient suffering from osteoarthritis of the ankle. A difficult case because there was a valgus deformity, among the most difficult challenges when it comes to the ankle.

The atmosphere in the operating room was great and it was all about cooperation.

Dr. Classens is a great surgeon. We discussed the case together and reviewed some issues, but we both knew what was expecting us: a difficult case, then a fascinating challenge.

I’ve been in Belgium for 18 very intense hours and now here I am again on a plane back to my “Italian routine”.

I smile when I think about it. A mixed feeling of joy and tiredness comes over me and I find myself thinking about and thanking every member of my staff. Men and women who do their utmost every day to help me work better. Katia who makes sure that every instrument in my hand is the right one… before I even ask. Michael, Camilla, Andrea, Claudia, young and enthusiastic surgeons who work every day to help me work in the best conditions. Doctors who also rely on me to enrich their training, both professionally and humanly.

Yesterday was a good day, a day worth living for and remembering. Our teamwork, efficient and meticulous, paid off; after few hours of surgery, the patient had a mobile, stable and well-aligned ankle.

My most sincere thanks go to Dr. Classens, his team and to Thomas Verhauwaert, PM for Trauma and Extremities of Zimmer-Biomet Belgium.
With his impeccable organizational skills and passion for his work, Thomas Verhauwaert is a valuable resource of Zimmer – Biomet for those colleagues in Belgium who can work in the best conditions.