Our April cover story on the links between electronic health records (EHRs) and physician burnout, the continuing problem of manels (or all-male speaking panels) at vascular surgery meetings, and some of the latest details on the 2021 Vascular Annual Meeting (VAM) were among last month’s top 10 most-read stories on the Vascular Specialist website.
Vascular surgeons Gabriela Velazquez, MD, London C. Guidry, MD, and Amit Chawla, MD, took an in-depth look at 60-plus peer-reviewed journal papers that established a link between physician burnout and the EHR. This point-by-point analysis followed statements made by Judith Faulkner, the CEO of EHR giant Epic, that questioned whether there was any evidence tying the EHR to burnout.
In a thought-provoking commentary, Karen Woo, MD, discussed the ongoing issues that flow from all-male speaking panels—or “manels.” Woo points out how underrepresentation of women in public-facing forums speaks to students and trainees. “Manels are a symptom of the underlying disparity in that it is easy to tap the men who constitute the majority of vascular surgeons, academic vascular surgery faculty and leadership,” she wrote.
Details of a planned pilot study, led by Enrico Ascher, MD, investigating the merits of performing endovascular aortic repair (EVAR) on abdominal aortic aneurysms (AAAs) in office-based labs (OBLs) and other free-standing ambulatory facilities emerged during the Critical Issues America annual meeting.
In addition to the aforementioned stories on EHRs and manels, the April issue featured stories covering Society for Vascular Surgery (SVS) work on diversity, equity and inclusion; VAM; appropriate use of atherectomy; and the BeGraft FEVAR study.
The recent reintroduction of the bipartisan Amputation Reduction and Compassion (ARC) Act—aimed at improving peripheral arterial disease (PAD) education, increasing access to PAD screening and preventing avoidable lower limb amputations—drew a mixed response from vascular surgeons soon after it was revealed. This report detailed a sampling of views.
The guest editorial published in the February issue of Vascular Specialist continued to garner a large audience last month. In this piece, Andrew J. Meltzer, MD, took a satirical look at the practice patterns of vascular surgery’s “1%” following the publication of a paper he and colleagues had submitted to the Annals of Vascular Surgery. “In the event you’ve been too busy performing indicated and appropriate surgical procedures to keep abreast of every #VascTwitter discussion, permit me to provide an update: 1% of U.S. vascular surgeons account for 15% of Medicare reimbursement to our specialty,” he wrote by way of introduction.
7. Patients with AAAs who had COVID-19 may need ‘more frequent surveillance’ until better understanding of link emerges
Presenting at the 2021 edition of Charing Cross (CX), SVS President Ronald L. Dalman, MD, told the digital audience that patients with known AAAs, who may have had a COVID-19 infection, might need to have more frequent or a different surveillance regimen until a better understanding of the relationship between the virus and progression of aneurysms is achieved.
8. VenoValve: Chronic venous insufficiency device gains brisk double of first US patent, IDE approval
News of the first U.S. patent—as well as Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval of an Investigational Device Exemption (IDE)—for VenoValve attracted considerable attention last month. The U.S. pivotal trial for the prosthetic venous valve, which is intended to treat patients with chronic venous insufficiency (CVI), is a prospective, non-blinded, single-arm, multicenter study of 75 CVI patients to be enrolled at up to 20 U.S. centers.
Colleagues of Noor Gul Shah, MD, who passed away in October last year aged 29, penned this moving tribute in celebration of her life. Shah was a remarkable fourth-year resident in general surgery at NYU Langone Health in New York City, they wrote. “Born and raised in Cherry Hill, New Jersey, she attended her home state’s Rutgers University for her collegiate studies, graduating from Rutgers’ Robert Wood Johnson School of Medicine in New Brunswick in 2017 as a member of the Alpha Omega Alpha honors society.”
In this detailed feature from earlier in April, we detailed how the moving pieces that comprise this year’s VAM, set to take place Aug. 18–21 at the San Diego Convention Center, San Diego, are being assembled into a blockbuster whole.