By Daniel Galat, M.D., SIGN Surgeon at Kijabe Hospital in Kenya.
One night in December, two weeks into the national doctors’ strike in Kenya, and with cases stacking up for surgery, I received a phone call from one of the third year orthopaedic residents. “Dr. Galat, you won’t believe this but your resident, Dr. John Mandela, just injured his leg playing soccer,” he said. “He’s in casualty, and it looks like he has an open (compound) tibia fracture.”
While heading to the hospital to see Dr. John, I chuckled at the irony of operating on my only resident. “You just can’t make this stuff up,” I thought. At the same time I was thankful for the opportunity to help.
I found John in casualty with a bloody splint on his leg and, trying to lighten the mood, promptly informed him he was going to have to write all patient notes from his hospital bed.
Thankfully, we were able to take him to the operating room that same night to wash the open wound and stabilize the fracture using a SIGN Nail.
The 15th annual SIGN Conference recently wrapped up. Nearly 150 surgeons from 27 countries gathered to share what they’ve learned about using the SIGN System, trauma surgery, and other insights.
Even before the presentations began, the Signature Center in Richland, Wash., was filled to capacity.
The theme of the conference was “Voyage of Discovery,” and Dr. Zirkle encouraged everyone to find new ways to look at surgery and think of solutions to problems they face in the surgical theater.
After each presentation doctors asked questions, which prompted great discussion and helped everyone in the room learn more. (more…)