The Indian Association of Gastrointestinal Endosurgeons (IAGES) organised its 2nd Fellowship program in bariatric and metabolic surgery (FALS) between 6-8 October in Mumbai.
The event saw a congregation of over 180 bariatric surgeons from across India who received training from the top bariatric surgeons in the country during the three-day fellowship program. The event covered many critical aspects concerning bariatric industry worldwide such as advances in bariatric surgery, complications, co-morbidities and associated diseases and so on.
Dr Phil Schauer from Cleveland Clinic, during the program shared the results derived from a five-year trial known as Surgical Therapy and Medications Potentially Eradicate Diabetes Efficiently (STAMPEDE) that showed excellent outcomes of surgery in diabetics. The study found that bariatric surgery gives Type 2 diabetes sufferers a much better chance at remission than conventional treatments that combine lifestyle counseling with medications. “The really surprising thing, especially for gastric bypass patients, is that nearly a third sustained a complete remission of diabetes,” said Dr Philip Schauer, director of the Clinic’s Bariatric and Metabolic Institute and lead author of the study.
Dr Ramen Goel, Director Bariatric and Metabolic surgery at Wockhardt Hospitals and Organising Chairman, FALS Bariatric highlighted the need for ethical practice in the field. “Ethical practice is even more relevant in bariatrics. In my personal bariatrics experience of over 17 years, it is not a question of whom to operate but when not to operate. One should have the courage to refuse surgery if someone is psychiatrically unstable or doing it for image reasons only.”
The conference was also graced by honorable Bhikkhu Sanghasena who in the year 2017, is being spoken of as a worthy and likely contender for the Nobel Peace Prize.
Bhikkhu Sanghasena in his keynote address on compassion in healthcare highlighted the need for love, concern, and meditation in the medical profession. “Dear doctors, while you are treating patients, besides sharing your expertise, knowledge and diagnosing and selecting the correct treatment, you will also have to have feelings of true compassion, care, love and concern for your patient. It will make a lot of difference,” he said.
Speaking on the occasion Zahabiya Khorakiwala, Managing Director, Wockhardt Hospitals said, “The WHO estimates that more than a billion adults worldwide are overweight, of these at least 300 million are obese. Obesity is associated with many chronic diseases including type 2 diabetes, hypertension, coronary heart disease, stroke and several cancers. In India, there has been an increase in obese patients undergoing bariatric surgery which leads to more efficient weight loss results. Bariatric surgery is an effective treatment option for severally obese patients for whom weight loss has been problematic with conventional therapy and all lifestyle intervention based treatments.”
Some of the senior bariatric surgeons who attended the fellowship program included Dr Pradeep Chaubey, Dr Subhash Khanna, Dr Randeep Wadhawan, Dr Zameer Pasha, Dr Kesava Mannur (UK) Dr Mal Fobi(USA), Dr Michel Gagner(Canada), Dr K Mannur(UK) and Dr Luc Lemmens(Belgium).
Being put together by Dr Ramen Goel, the FALS program is an eagerly awaited annual event. Dr Goel shared, “To be eligible to attend the Fellowship program, you need a minimum of 6 years’ experience post your MS. The three-day training program, is followed by an exam, a viva and those who clear are conferred a fellowship(FALS)”
The program has immense credibility on two counts- there is no other postgraduate program available in bariatric surgery and 80% of senior bariatric surgeons already have the FALS certificate. The association hopes to certify more than 110 surgeons this year