“Vascular surgery is my DNA”, Alan Lumsden (Houston, USA) tells Vascular News, as he discusses the role of vascular surgeons in the cardiac surgery world. He highlights that on his programme, “three out of five of our last finishing trainees have opted to go on to do cardiac surgery fellowships. You can either pull your hair out and say that is terrible or pause and think about why that is the case,” he says.
“We can’t stop it so I think we should embrace it”, adds Lumsden—who was speaking at this year’s Society for Vascular Surgery (SVS) Vascular Annual Meeting (VAM 2022; 15–18 June, Boston, USA)—before outlining his own belief that “we should make sure that the vascular trainees who choose to take this path still see themselves as vascular surgeons”.
The reason for this, says Lumden, is that “one of the threats is that they see themselves as heart surgeons if we divorce them from the vascular specialty group and I think that would be a terrible mistake”. He goes on to discuss what path he would take if he were to train again and why those who can undertake complex aortic interventions are at the forefront of a “changing training paradigm” in the field.