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Dear ladies and gentlemen,
As congress president I have the great pleasure and honour of welcoming you to the 47th annual congress meeting of the DGTHG (Germany Society of Thoracic and Cardiac Surgery) in Leipzig in February 2018. What was accompanied with some uncertainties at the beginning has proven to be very positive for all participants in the past two years. Also, together with Prof. Gorenflo, my partner in children´s cardiology, I hope that organizing the meetings in 2018 will again encourage and consolidate an already very close cooperation between our faculties. Years ago and long before even being used in adult cardiology, the term “Heart Team” was already familiar and has proven itself as a solution to congenital heart diseases.
Also, there is a good reason why we cardiac surgeons and pediatric cardiologists chose Leipzig as the location: It has proven not only to be an excellent site for cooperation between our faculties, but also offers wonderful social events. This year´s motto “WE HEAL HEARTS” is a powerful statement, especially emphasizing that “WE” illustrates the cooperation between both faculties and “HEAL” illustrates the medical profession. Furthermore, the graphic depicts a small and a large heart which appear to be broken along the lines only and is to be understood here as a symbol of a sick heart. The color context in the graphic in red and blue symbolizes the left and the right heart. The lighter blue background reflects the expanse of the sky, therefore clearly showing our good prospects for the future.
The presidents of both faculties agreed upon the key topics: the common themes are aortic diseases, trachea diseases and heart failure, which should naturally be highlighted from different points of view. Coronary heart disease is a very important topic for cardiac surgery and the achieved scientific progresses could be discussed here extensively.
The main subject “Borderline Cases in Cardiology” is intended to highlight where ethical aspects indeed play a particular role. Besides this, in view of increasing age and comorbidity of our patients, it is important to reflect upon our own experiences regarding surgical indications and results and deciding upon which patient group will ultimately benefit from invasive therapy. In addition to the close network with the DGPK, we are also integrated with the Austrian Society for Thoracic and Cardiac Surgery as well as the Swiss Society for Cardiac, Thoracic and Vascular Surgery. Furthermore, we are again planning joint meetings with expert societies of Thoracic Surgery, Vascular Surgery and Vascular Medicine, of Cardiology, and of General Practice, as well as of Geriatric Medicine.
Certainly, the agreed frame conditions for sponsoring by third parties pose a challenge to the organizers, nevertheless, we have succeeded in compiling an appealing overall program.
On behalf of the congress team, I would like to invite you to hold lively discussions on your scientific results and findings during this congress and to visit meetings whose subject matter do not necessarily lie in your field of research. I wish us all a successful annual event, whereby I would like to define success as a gain in information, as an accumulation of new ideas and as an avid exchange between colleagues, and I hope to see you all once more in Leipzig in February 2018.
Professor Andreas Böning