Yasser Ali Elbatrawy Sr, MD, PhD


Yasser Ali Elbatrawy Sr, MD, PhD
Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery
Al-Azhar University
Cairo, Egypt


How has the AAOS helped you throughout your career?
Actually, AAOS affected my career a lot, as well as my influence in orthopedic surgery, not only in my country but also internationally. Since I became a member of AAOS in 1998 and got to know the leaders in the subspecialties, I then contacted them to do fellowships to learn new techniques directly from them which I then transferred to my country as well as to many other countries.

For example: I initiated Ponseti method in club foot treatment not only in Egypt but also in many other African, European and Asian countries. I can nominate tens of countries where I treated children with club foot and taught colleagues there how to do it in the right way as Professor Ponseti, Dr. Herzenberg and Dr. Pirani taught me how to do it.

Also, I initiated the technique of Hemi - epiphysiodesis using 8-plate in Egypt since I learned it from the leaders in USA; Dr. Dror Paley and Dr. Herzenberg from Baltimore, MD in 1999 & 2000. I popularized that technique in Egypt then it spread in all the countries around.

I got my fellowship in limb lengthening and reconstruction in Baltimore, MD and I moved along the USA to AAOS leaders to learn new techniques in that field at that time. I learned how to use hexapods as TSF to correct the long bones complex deformities since the software was on floppy disk until the latest online versions and new devices.

I learned a lot from the leaders Dr. Charles Taylor and Dr. James Binski as well as Dr. Kevin Tetsworth…all are AAOS members. Then, I used the devices in my patients and my university hospital in Cairo became the Mecca of the patients who need advanced devices, as well as for the specialists who want to learn these new advanced techniques of which I became one of the leaders of in the whole Middle East.

Later on, and since I regularly attend the Annual Meeting and learn every new thing in my subspeciality, I started to use the new intra medullary technique for lengthening with remote controller (Precise nail). I started to do it since 2013 until now in Cyprus where I also practice.

Overall, in the 25 years since I became an AAOS member, I have published many scientific articles and taught my own new techniques in different courses and congresses all over the world. AAOS membership affected my career a lot and I am so proud to be a member of AAOS over all these years. I always participate in the Annual Meetings and do not miss any except very few.

As an International Member, which AAOS resources do you use most and why?
I always use the AAOS website, attend webinars, as well as read all the new articles in JAAOS®. The website gave me the privilege to learn a lot through its content, videos, symposiums, journals, links to lectures and courses, etc. I cannot find any other orthopedic organization that possesses all these resources that are essential for any specialist to develop himself and build up his career.

What’s the best advice you were ever given? Who was it from?
It was advice of Dr. John Herzenberg from Baltimore, MD who was my mentor during my 2 years in fellowship with him and Dr. Dror Paley in 1999 when he advised me to travel to San Francisco to attend the first course there about Ponseti technique. I travelled with my colleagues Monica Nugira from Brazil who also became a leader of that technique and spread it in South America as I did later in the Middle East. Then later on I met and learned more from other leaders such as Dr. Pirani from Canada, Dr. Jose Morcuende and Dr. Mathew Dobbs from the USA.

What’s your go-to productivity trick?
I always like to think in the case that I am the patient (who is in front of me), what should be done to me to reach the best possible cure? Then, I have to think in the box as well as outside the box to choose the best option that leads to the best treatment for my patient. Then think about the resources I have and how to function them in the best way to help my patient be able to live better than his or her current condition. It is not important how many patients I operate on per week, but more importantly how many patients get high quality treatment and achieve his or his goal at the end of the treatment journey.

It is also important to follow up on all details about every patient and listen seriously to any complaint of him or her before and during the treatment to avoid any possible complication that could arise and prevent it from happening or treat it early and avoid it became bigger and leading to a permanent complication.

Always: prophylactic is better than treatment! So: keeping open eyes to my patients is also important and it could be one of the important secrets of success.

What’s one thing you’re currently trying to make a habit?
Scientific publications. I used to publish 2-4 articles annually and I would like to have more time to write about and share my experiences to my colleagues from all over the world.

What hobbies do you enjoy in your spare time?
Swimming and playing squash, as well as reading history books are my hobbies. However, being a famous specialist in my field makes it very hard to find the spare time!

Tell us a fun fact about yourself that not many people know.
I can say a fact that really not many know about me is that I still enjoy reading Mickey Mouse magazines since I was a child until now. It could be a big shame if one of my patients or colleagues discover that 😁 but now…I think all the world will know that.