The 11th Congress of the International Hand and Composite Tissue Allotransplantation Society held in Wroclaw, Poland was a smashing success. It included an interesting scientific program, as well as a lovely social program such as the reception in the historic Wroclaw Town Hall and the gala dinner at the beautiful Wroclaw Opera House where Jean-Michel Dubernard and Raimund Margreiter were honoured as pioneers in CTA/VCA.
The scientific program included an update of the experience of the majority of centers performing hand or/and face transplantation over the world. In addition, uterus transplantation and abdominal wall allotransplantations were presented. There were sessions on donor issues and organization of hand or face transplantation program in different countries. Other sessions focusing on rejection, infections and other complications in this new field of transplantation that induced a productive discussion as well as others on CTA/VCA models and on potential new methods to treat rejection and speed nerve regeneration. In Melina Nakos Symposium the participants debated with gusto whether we are ready to offer CTA/VCA grafts to children and patients with congenital defects.
There were three keynote lectures: Dr. Dubernard presented on how the field has moved from myth to reality; Dr. Margreiter gave the second keynote lecture, a wonderful tour of the events that led to Innsbruck hand transplant program and Dr. Siemionow presented a review of the ethical aspects of face transplantation. In addition three of the hand transplant recipients from the Wroclaw program attended the meeting and were available to discuss their experience with meeting participants.
Finally, a General Assembly of the members of IHCTAS was held and we are pleased to welcome the new members of our 2013 – 2015 Council. A complete list of the Council, as well as the goals of the Society can be found at www.ihctas.org
Our profound thanks to Dr. Jablecki, the organizing and honorary committee, and the TTS for a wonderful opportunity to share and obtain feedback in this exciting field.