Message from Prof Abboud

I would just like to take this opportunity to wish you all a happy holiday season and for a healthy and prosperous 2019 New Year. Each of us, no matter what nationality or religion, should make the effort to spend quality time with family and friends and to try to forget grievances and look to the future with a positive outlook. It is a time to take stock and plan for the year ahead, and for most of you this will mean hard work, sacrifice and lots of study, ultimately and hopefully leading to a successful conclusion come end of your course and graduation in 2019!

It has been another fantastic year here at the TORT Centre, a highlight of which was celebrating the Silver 25th Anniversary of the MCh (Orth) course, both here in Dundee in June, and in Coimbatore, India in November. Thinking back in time, I have equally been employed in this University and the Orthopaedic Department for 25 years, and I cherish every moment, good or bad, that helped shape my career capitalising on every opportunity that presented itself following the same advice that I always say: "the more you put in, the more you get out". Other worthwhile events to mention include:

  • New and exciting cadaveric workshops organised and run by Mr Arpit Jariwala who was promoted to Honorary Reader in March 2018
  • The inaugural Mini-Symposium on Shoulder Stability organised by Mr Arpit Jariwala
  • Cadaveric workshop using computer navigation lead by Mr Kamal Deep
  • A team from TORT attending IASM 2018 and I was one of three international keynote speakers at the event
  • A team from TORT attending IOACON 2018 and I was a keynote speaker at the event
  • Publication of papers in peer-reviewed journals and podium and poster presentations around the world
  • I was formally elected Fellow ad hominem of the Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh (RCSEd)
  • The reaccreditation of the IMAR labs by the Clinical Movement Analysis Society of UK and Ireland (CMAS) thanks to the hard work of Dr Graham Arnold, Mr Sadiq Nasir and Mrs Linda Johnston
  • I was awarded Honorary Professor of Orthopaedics from Maharashtra University of Health Sciences and the Sancheti Institute for Orthopaedics & Rehabilitation
  • Nine members of staff were awarded Long Service Awards by the University of Dundee
  • The appointment of Mr David Nicoll to two academic postgraduate programme activities in support of our suite of masters programmes after a long, successful and distinguished spell as our UG MBChB Orthopaedics Teaching Lead which came to an end in September 2018
  • Erin Frizzell BMSc project (2017, supervised by Dr Tim Drew), which was published in the BMJ Open Sports & Exercise Medicine in October 2018 attracted massive media attention calling for headguards to become mandatory in rugby
  • The launch of the Gait Primer by the Royal Societies of London and Edinburgh that will guide the judiciary globally and I was one of the three authors

Looking forward to 2019, it will be a special year for the BMSc in Applied Orthopaedic & Technology and the current batch will be the 18th batch reaching “maturity” - a celebration gala will be organised in due course.

Our ongoing success is mainly due to our small but very effective and cohesive team with most going beyond their contractual obligations to support the work of the department and I thank you for this.

Dr Sheila Gibbs (Senior Clinical Gait Analyst and Honorary Consultant Clinical Scientist), Mr Amar Jain, Mr Neil Valentine and Mr Pete Rickhuss (Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeons) all retired this year. We thank them for all their hard work and dedication over the years.

Calum MacDonald (IMAR Laboratory Technician) left to further his education at Glasgow Caledonian University, where he is studying MSc Physiotherapy.

Professor Dame Sue Black OBE also left the University of Dundee for a new position of Pro Vice Chancellor for Engagement at the University of Lancaster. We wish her every success.

I would like to extend a warm welcome to Liz Begg, and Angie Lorimer who are both part-time, and to Kenzi Robertson who is a modern apprentice. The three have joined our small band and they have all contributed immensely to the working of the Department. 

There are of course less happy moments that inevitably occur during a twelve month period. Sadly we lost three highly regarded members of the TORT Centre to untimely deaths. We remember Lisa Fortuna, Willie Ritchie and Jim Wilson with great affection. Our thoughts are with their families at this time.

I wish you all a marvellous Christmas and a happy and fruitful New Year!

Professor Rami Abboud