Andries A. de Villiers, FRACS, FRCS, FCS, MMed, MBChB

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Why did you join AAOS?

My motivation to join the AAOS was to have access to excellent master classes, conferences and online teaching material, since attending the first in the early 1996, I look back with gratitude and recall with great pleasure my ability to be a part of this Academy.

How do you define success?

Success is the ability to achieve happiness and contentment in what you are able to give your patients and is reflected in their gratitude that you enabled them to have a normal life after their hip, knee or shoulder replacements and other reconstructions.

Who is your biggest inspiration and why?

I was my own biggest inspiration. In 2017 I suffered a dissection of my vertebral artery after a rhizotomy at C 2/3 on the right. I could not walk or use my right hand due to a right sided cerebellar infarct. After three months of intensive rehabilitation including surgery on cadavers I was back in practice and have been doing an average of 8-12 joint replacements a week ever since. Instead of going on disability, I rose to the challenge and went from strength to strength.

What do you love most about AAOS?

My ability to network with surgeons in the USA with challenging cases and in doing so, do the best for my patients.

What advice would you give to new members of AAOS?

To new orthopaedic surgeons, my advice is to unite and join the AAOS. It has been one of the most useful memberships to me even as an International Member. I have always been exceptionally well received in America and have been there on numerous occasions.

Tell us a fun fact about yourself that not many people know?

Despite being a meticulous orthopaedic surgeon and having an 11 handicap, I still to my great frustration duff the occasional chip shot.