Interview with Christina Arnaoutoglou - OTC Hellas
In the domain of osteosynthesis and trauma surgery, and also in the OTC Foundation, women are rather underrepresented. For this reason, we decided to show who the women behind OTC are and what they do for the foundation. Dr. Christina Arnaoutoglou is our second interview partner.
You are the first female president of an OTC chapter. Is this an honour for you?
Christina Arnaoutoglou: Honestly I haven’t realized that I am the first female president of an OTC chapter. Of course, this is an honour for me but on the other side, I think that I have worked hard through the last years to get this position.
Why do you think women are still underrepresented in the OTC Foundation?
OTC is a Foundation which tries to advance osteosynthesis and trauma care and is staffed mostly by orthopedic and trauma surgeons. People believe that orthopedic surgery is demanding because it requires physical strength, hours of work and sometimes night work as well. So a lot of female doctors are discouraged to follow this kind of specialty.
Will the number of men and women in medicine ever be equal?
There are now as many female medical students as males in universities, but men still outnumber women in surgery, even if women have been involved throughout history.
In which field of orthopedic surgery are you specializing? What is it that makes you interested in that field?
I am specialized and work mostly in trauma surgery (children and adults) and adults reconstructive surgery. I like this field of orthopedics because you can see direct and quick results of your job. For example, a young man has a femoral fracture, you operate him and immediately, he has no deformity and he is able to walk again. On the other side, osteosynthesis is a kind of art, like sculpture. You have a broken bone and with the proper instrumentation, you can reform it. This whole procedure is magical!
How long have you been a member of the OTC Foundation or involved in the OTC Foundation?
I have been member of OTC Hellas (Greek chapter) since 2008.
Why did you get involved with the OTC Foundation? What motivation do you have to work for the Foundation?
When I finished my specialty of Orthopedic Surgery and Traumatology in Greece, I went to Strasbourg and I worked there with Dr. Gilbert Taglang, my mentor in intramedullary nailing technique. I was inspired by him to involve with the OTC Foundation in order to get scientific experiences and I was hoping with the time to be able to teach young colleagues how to deal with fractures, trauma patients and the technique of intramedullary nailing.
Where do you see the general benefit of the OTC Foundation?
I am convinced that the existence of any scientific organization extends the level of interaction between its members. The OTC Foundation gives the opportunity to advance the techniques and the treatment of trauma patients in order to improve the quality of life of such patients, respectively.
In which areas do you see potential for the OTC Foundation to improve?
The OTC Foundation must improve its training programs, enable interaction and cooperation between its sections and promote humanitarian activities.
What has been your personal highlight since getting involved with the OTC Foundation?
I was getting involved with the OTC because I wanted to teach the intramedullary nailing technique and its principles to as many young doctors as I could. Now, being President of OTC Hellas, I have the opportunity to promote this demanding technique throughout the country!
What highlights do you expect to come within the next years?
I am very optimistic that by using the knowledge of the past, we can improve the research and training programs. This way, we will be able to provide young colleagues a higher level of services in the treatment of fractures and trauma patients in the future.
Thank you very much!
The pleasure is mine!
M. Arnaoutoglou, MD, PhD
Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon
Department of Orthopaedic Surgery & Musculoskeletal Trauma
University Hospital of Thessaly, Larissa, Greece