Presidents Message

Hernia surgery -  2017 and beyond

Recent political decisions and appointments have created tension in the world. Rest assured, I have no plans to build a “wall” around hernia surgery, but I would like to put the “great” back into hernia surgery.  I suspect greater numbers of hernia operations will be done by a smaller number of surgeons, but hernia surgery remains and should remain an important part of ‘general’ surgery.

The membership of the BHS continues to grow, approaching 600 members. The desire for hernia education continues, with record attendance at the excellent BHS meeting in Newcastle 2016.  The Abdominal Wall Reconstruction Europe meeting in London 2017 was also well attended (Al Windsor) and the Controversies in Hernia Surgery Meeting (Aman Bhargarva)  I am sure will be well received also.  Don’t forget the EHS meeting in Vienna at the end of May.

The British Hernia Society Board has identified a number of objectives for the near future. We do need to speak as one voice, coming together for the good of successful hernia surgery.  So please join the twitter feed @BritishHernia, and remember #herniasurgery for any hernia related tweet.  As a recent convert to twitter, I have been impressed at the power of twitter to educate and inform.  For the many surgeons out there who are still in the dark, jump on board and welcome to the twentyfirst century.  Instruction on how to join and run with twitter are on the website.

Another big objective is to allow surgeons who are involved with #herniasurgery, access to an online registry. We are aware of the difficulties of data entry in our busy jobs, but without data, hernia surgery may struggle to compete for a place in a cash strapped health system.  We need to know what we are doing, and more importantly, are we doing good from the patient’s perspective.  The use of the EQ-5D and EQ-VAS patient reported outcome measures by NHS England have identified the importance of not just collecting data, but collecting data that informs future practice.  So watch this space and hope you will run with this.

There are a lot of unanswered questions in #herniasurgery. Let’s try and get together and answer some of them.

Best wishes


Andrew de Beaux