|Friday, 01 October 2010|
The British Association of Urological Surgeons Annual Meeting took place at a sun-drenched Manchester Central from 21-24 June, writes Bernard Ferrie
BAUS 2010 followed the now familiar and successful mixture of plenary sessions, Office of Education Teaching and Skills courses (16 in all, many sold out beforehand), poster presentations, extensive trade exhibition and sponsored satellite sessions.
‘Print is Dead’ was a stimulating session on medical publishing at the crossroads from the editor of the British Journal of Urology International – although only 10% of delegates looked at the electronic abstracts in the weeks before the conference, so possibly paper journals have a few years left yet.
There are now five distinct areas of urology reflected by the various sections of BAUS: oncology, endourology, female neuro-urology and urodynamic urology and academic urology. Some concern was expressed about fewer trainees wanting to undertake research and, apparently, urology has become the least attractive of all the surgical specialties, as judged by applications from prospective trainees. Food for thought.
There was much discussion on the Future Delivery of Urological Services, especially in a cold financial climate and the Quality Agenda in Urology Care. Diagnostic Urology has been proposed as a more attractive future possibility than the previous term Office Urology. Such consultants would concentrate on diagnosis and one-stop clinics with higher discharge rates after the first clinic appointment and onward referral to other urologists for anything more than flexible cystoscopy and peno-scrotal surgery.
Continuing and welcome trends are the emphasis on high volume procedures at designated centres carrying out operations such as cystectomy. The target for radical prostatectomy procedures should probably be set at 25 per institution rather than the current figure which is nearer 5 per year. Robotic-assisted renal procedures, especially for renal cancers, are gaining ground.
Personal highlights were presentations by six previous SHOs and Claire Fowler’s masterly review of 25 years’ experience of non-surgical urinary retention – unravelling the previous mystery of female urinary retention.
The award for the best paper was given to M Bultitude et al for ‘Ureteroscopic Follow-up of Upper Tract TCC – a five-year follow-up’, and the best poster award went to B Horsburgh et al for ‘The Effect of Urodynamic Catheters on Urinary Flow Rate Measurement’. Also noteworthy was the launch of the new BAUS website offering a wider range of facilities to specialty members, including audits on new urological cancers, suprapubic catheters, intravesical botox, penile surgery including prostheses and complex urological operations.
The social highlight was the conference dinner in Manchester Town Hall – its neo-Gothic magnificence emphasising what many feel is Manchester’s claim at present to be the best UK venue for large surgical conferences.