The SVS has a long tradition of reaching out to the worldwide vascular surgery community. As of September 2014, members outside North America totaled 908 and included representatives of 51 countries.
Organized in 2012, the SVS Brazilian Chapter has grown steadily to 509 members. Last year, as President Calógero Presti, MD, began planning the chapter’s Second International Symposium, he saw an opportunity to partner with a nearby regional society.
Joint effort with SBACV
Dr. Presti approached fellow SVS Brazil member Marcelo Moraes, MD, chairman of Brazilian Society of Angiology and Vascular Surgery/State of São Paulo Chapter, with a synergistic proposal. What if, Dr. Presti proposed, the two organizations combined their major meetings in 2014?
“Dr. Moraes immediately accepted,” Dr. Presti said. “Our symposium took a huge leap in prominence and quality due to linking with the SBACV Controversies Congress, and our decision to diversify the program by including international colleagues.”
Debating daily practice
The SBACV Controversies Congress is a bi-annual conference for opinion leaders in vascular medicine. Prominent experts formally debate a series of issues in daily vascular and endovascular practice that lack consensus. After each debate, the discussion is opened up to session attendees. At the close of discussion, an electronic vote is recorded and immediately shared, revealing the percentage of participants who agree with each side of the debate.
Cross-pollinating the SBACV Congress with the SVS Brazil Symposium appealed to Dr. Moraes. “Our goal in collaborating with SVS,” he said, “was an expanded examination of the issues, moving from discussion based exclusively on the Brazilian experience to a more cosmopolitan outlook. The result was increased interaction and an enriched experience for all participants, Brazilian or not, raising the level of debate and encouraging a greater exercise of critical analysis.”
North American SVS delegation
Drs. Moraes and Presti invited international guests to lead several of the controversies debates. A North American point of view was provided by SVS International Relations Committee Co-Chair Glenn M. LaMuraglia, MD; SVS President-Elect Bruce A. Perler, MD; and Frank J. Veith, MD.
Dr. LaMuraglia described his experience as revelatory and rewarding.
“The discussion was fantastic, and I was happy to contribute by posing questions and counterarguments that would stir the debate to a new level,” Dr. LaMuraglia said.
“I also developed a whole new appreciation for how the data can cut both ways for specific patient findings as in the cases presented at the meeting.”
A productive partnership
Dr. Presti gave the collaboration top marks. “Bringing our two conferences together was highly beneficial,” he said. “I look forward to perpetuating this as a template going forward. It was a great success.”Dr. Moraes agreed, saying that: “The general opinion of participants was excellent regarding the participation of colleagues from other countries. Hearing points of view that originate from different training and practice routines greatly enriched their experience.”