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BLOG: Give a ‘shout out’ to our military orthopedic surgeons

By John D. Kelly IV, MD

I recently returned from one of the most fulfilling weekends I have experienced in some time – 2 days at the Arthroscopy Association of North America and the Society of Military Orthopaedic Surgeons combined course, which was held at the new Orthopaedic Learning Center in Rosemont, Ill.

Years ago, the leadership of the Arthroscopy Association of North America (AANA) thoughtfully conceived an educational course whose chief aim was to educate military surgeons, specifically the members of the Society of Military Orthopaedic Surgeons (SOMOS). Under the direction of innate leaders, such as Richard K. N. Ryu, MD, Matthew T. Provencher, MD, and JT Tokish, MD, the combined AANA/SOMOS course has successfully convened yearly since 2010.

Since most peacetime military practice is sports medicine related, attendees are eager to learn from the master surgeons provided by both AANA and SOMOS. Didactic lectures, cadaveric surgery and dissection as well as precious social interaction combined to yield a superlative educational and enlightening experience. After spending an entire weekend with our beloved soldier surgeons, I caught a real glimpse of their character which can be defined by several unique traits.

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