AASPA Newsline
Jun. 18, 2013

Robotic surgeries on the rise, but are there risks?
NBC News
The majority of the hundreds of thousands of robotic surgeries performed in the U.S. each year are done safely. However, as use of the machine increases, so are reports of injuries: The U.S. Food and Drug administration has received more than 200 reports since 2007 of burns, cuts and infections – including 89 deaths – after robotic surgery. Rock Center’s Dr. Nancy Snyderman investigates Intuitive Surgical Systems and meets a woman who blames her devastating complication on the robot. More

Sticky fix: Surgeons using 'super glue' to mend brains
NBC News
Doctors at the University of Kansas Hospital use super glue to treat an infant suffering from a hemorrhaging brain aneurysm. KSHB’s Jadiann Thompson reports. A 3-week-old girl was recovering from life-saving brain surgery after Kansas surgeons used a sterile surgical glue to seal the infant's bleeding aneurysm. The baby, Ashlyn Julian, has shown no complications from the June 5 procedure at The University of Kansas Hospital in Kansas City, Kan., and is expected to head home following another week or so of monitoring, said Bob Hallinan, hospital spokesman.More

Calling all artists! Enter AASPA's 1st T-shirt design contest

Try your hand at creating the AASPA official 2013 conference T-shirt! The winner will receive a free 2013 AASPA CME Conference registration ($550 value). All entries must be submitted by July 1 and follow all design guidelines stated here.

Any questions? Click here or contact Linda Kotrba at executivedirector@aaspa.com.More

2013 AASPA CME Meeting & Surgical Update
We hope you will join us Oct. 3-6 at the Hilton Alexandria Old Town in Alexandria, Va., for our 13th Annual AASPA CME Meeting in 2013.

Join fellow surgical PAs, PA educators, PA students, pre-PA students and surgical industry leaders at the 13th Annual Surgical CME, preceding the Annual Clinical Congress of the American College of Surgeons!

This exciting, hands-on surgical meeting will be held at the fabulous Hilton Alexandria Old Town in the heart of historical Old Town Alexandria, Va.

If you are looking for a qualified surgical PA, this is the ideal venue to fill that position. For industry exhibitors looking for "high touch face time" with surgical PAs, this is the ideal meeting for you!More

Foldable silicone artificial iris creates natural effect in post-traumatic eyes
Pole-to-pole surgery in traumatized eyes might require iris reconstruction, according to a specialist. "As trauma surgeons, we often underestimate the importance of preserving or reconstructing the iris. Although saving vision is our primary goal, we should not forget how much patients, particularly young patients, care about cosmetic results. We have post-trauma patients who eventually accept vision loss but not the aesthetic damage," Dr. Cesare Forlini said at the meeting of the European Society of Ophthalmology.More

Orthopedic surgeons more likely to recommend knee replacement to men
A survey published in May's Pain Medicine News indicates that orthopedists recommend total knee replacement much more often to men than women. A Yale rheumatologist and her associates conducted the survey of 406 orthopedic surgeons and 494 rheumatologists. More

How will the role of spine surgery evolve? 5 predictions from spine leaders
Becker's ASC Review
At the 11 Annual Spine, Orthopedic & Pain Management-Driven ASC Conference on June 14, a panel of spine leaders discussed trends and challenges for spine surgery going forward in a keynote session titled "The Changing Role of Spine Surgery." The panel featured Richard Wohns, M.D., J.D., M.B.A., of NeoSpine; Kenneth Pettine, M.D., founder of The Spine Institute; Jeff Leland, chief executive officer of Blue Chip Surgery Center Partners; and Stephen Hochschuler, M.D., of the Texas Back Institute. Forrest Sawyer moderated the session. More

Novel assessment tool may prevent post-LASIK ectasia
Medscape Today
Cutting-edge wavefront aberrometry can be used to help refractive surgeons predict the biomechanical stability of the cornea after LASIK surgery. "We all want to identify corneas that are weaker, even if they don't have any topographic abnormalities," Marcony Santhiago, MD, from the Federal University of Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, told Medscape Medical News.More

New license agreement: Surgeons may soon 'see around corners'
Health Canal
A first-of-its-kind endoscope that allows surgeons to see around obstructions and generate real-time 3D images while performing surgery, may soon be a reality thanks to a recent license agreement made between The Hospital for Sick Children...More

Surgeon performs robotic laparoscopic procedure on pregnant patient
University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston via News Medical
Performing surgery on a pregnant patient is a delicate matter. Risks to both mother and baby must be carefully weighed in every decision a surgeon makes. Recently, at the University of Texas Medical Branch at Galveston, a surgeon performed... More

Less invasive hernia repair safer for obese
Medpage Today
Laparoscopic repair of ventral hernias cuts complications and hospital stay for obese patients, a national study showed. "Laparoscopy continues to be a safe and cost-effective surgical approach," Lee's group concluded. "Further studies are needed to define clinical criteria that may identify which obese patients with ventral hernias will benefit the most from a laparoscopic approach." The laparoscopic approach has seen rapid uptake in this population, rising from 7 percent of all ventral hernia repairs in 2008 to 28 percent in 2009.More

FDA urges protection of medical devices from cyber threats
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration urged medical device makers and medical facilities to upgrade security protections to protect against potential cyber threats that could compromise the devices or patient privacy. It released that advisory in coordination with a separate alert from the Department of Homeland Security, which disclosed vulnerability in a wide variety of medical equipment that can make those devices vulnerable to remote attacks from hackers.More

NEJM sheds light on payments to doctors
It should come as no surprise that pharmaceutical companies pay doctors for a variety of reasons such as research, lecturing, and teaching. Such payments are justified as these physicians tend to be in demand as experts and their expertise is valued. They can’t be expected to do this work pro bono – their time is valuable. However, such payments are viewed with great suspicion. Industry critics are quick to charge that what companies are really doing is currying favor with doctors so that they will write more prescriptions for their drugs. This type of “manipulation” is believed to be a conflict-of-interest.More