From May 4 to May 8, the 93rd annual meeting of American Association for Thoracic Surgery was held in the Minneapolis Convention Center, Minnesota, USA. More than 2,000 well-known experts in cardiothoracic surgery, cardiothoracic anesthesia, cardiology and related fields have attended the meeting (Figure 1).
May 4 and May 5 were mainly reserved for the training courses for surgeons and the official meeting began on May 6. Apart from the plenary session, there are three main simultaneous scientific sessions dedicated to three topics respectively: Adult Cardiac Surgery, Congenital Heart Disease, General Thoracic Surgery.
In his presidential address, on May 6, Dr Hartzell V. Schaff, MD, the president of 2013 AATS, addressed two key issues: leadership and scholarship. “To me, these two values, leadership and scholarship, define the American Association for Thoracic Surgery and its members,” he explained. “On one level, thoracic surgeons, indeed all surgeons must be leaders, leaders of your team in the operating room and in the hospital at large,” he emphasized.
In the Cardiac Surgery Simultaneous Scientific Session, Dr Tirone David, MD, reviewed the success of the Ross procedure over 20 years. “Our data show that patients who had the Ross procedure had excellent 20-year survival,” he indicated, while Elizabeth H. Stephens, MD, looked at aortic regurgitation (AR) after valve-sparing aortic root replacement. Rakesh M. Suri, MD, discussed the issue of reoperation after elective aortic valve repair.
As the Honored Guest Lecturer, Richard B. Cheney (Figure 2), the former Vice President of America, recounted his long history of cardiovascular disease and the multiple procedures he has experienced throughout his lifetime in an informal panel setting with his cardiac surgeon, Alan Speir, MD, Inova Fairfax Hospital, and AATS President, Hartzell V. Schaff. Mr Cheney suffered the first of a series of myocardial infarctions in 1978 at the age of 37, and the most recent event in 2012. He pointed out that he was lucky the medical progress paralleled his cardiac disease. He also makes a point of talking to other people who have, or are planning, similar operations as a potential source of support, saying that nowadays cardiac physicians tell their patients “No matter what you’ve got, Cheney’s had it.”
When it came 5 pm on May 5, the exhibition hall became a spotlight. The exhibitors are busy welcoming their visitors (Figure 3).
As the international, peer-reviewed publication dedicated to the field of cardiothoracic surgery, the Annals of Cardiothoracic Surgery and the Journal of Thoracic Disease take this opportunity to get closer to its authors and readers. The ACS App (http://www.annalscts.com/announcement/view/72) was most welcomed by the experts and many of them ask us to help them to download it on the spot (Figures 4-7).
At our booth, we are also honored to meet the well-known experts from China (Figures 8,9), like Prof. Xiuyi Zhi, MD, Capital Medical University, Wentao Fang, MD, Shanghai Thoracic Hospital, and Chongxian Liao, MD, Fujian Medical University. They are very pleased about the achievement in our journals and express their willingness to give continued support for our journal (Figure 10A,B).
What worth noticing is the vivid presentation of excellent videos at our booth (Figures 11,12). The videos are selected from the published issues of ACS. The skillful techniques showed have received wide attention and accreditation from the experts (Figure 13).
We also met our quite a lot of our authors, Guest Editors and Editorial Board Members attending the meeting, many of whom are speakers for the meeting. They came to visit our booth to know more about our journal and gave some suggestions on how to get our journal to reach more authors and experts. Prof Paul Bonnon, the Co-Editor-in-Chief of Annals of Cardiothoracic Surgery, is very enthusiastic about talking to the authors and readers at our booth.
The exciting exhibition came to an end at 4:30 on May 7. At the conclusion of the Annual Business Meeting in the evening, David J. Sugarbaker was selected to be the 95th AATS President.
According to the majority of the experts, this year’s AATS witnessed an increase of the number of attendees and the depth and breadth of the discussion in the related issues heralds the further development of cardiothoracic surgery. The presentation of JTD and ACS give authors and readers a better understanding of our journal.
We look forward to seeing you in next year’s AATS annual meeting in Toronto!
Disclosure: The author declares no conflict of interest.