Dieter HahnloserDieter Hahnloser is ESCP's Education Committee Chair. He is chief surgeon and head of colorectal surgery at University Hospital Lausanne, Switzerland.

Name: Dieter Hahnloser

Current position and hospital: Chief surgeon, head of colorectal surgery. University Hospital Lausanne, Switzerland

ESCP Executive position: Education Committee Chair

Main clinical and research interests: Rectal cancer, IBD, especially ulcerative colitis, ODS, surgical education and training including virtual reality simulations

Twitter handle: @d_hahnd

What made you want to specialise in colorectal surgery?

I like the challenge of treating patients with benign and malignant diseases as well as performing complex procedures such as recurrent rectal cancer surgeries or IPAA, as well as straight forward proctology operations. We treat both young and older patients. The different goals of our operations are challenging: it is not just about cure and disease-free survival, but also about function and quality of life.

What is the best part of the job?

Training young residents and fellows in various operations.

How long have you been involved in ESCP and what made you want to become involved?

I trained in the US, but could not do a board examination. Therefore, I did the EBSQ colorpctology in 2003. This was my first ESCP meeting. Later, I became the UEMS representative and a member of the Education Committee. ESCP is not just a society that organises a meeting. It has become an forum for intense exchange of knowledge, research and education, and not just in Europe.

What do you value most about being involved in ESCP?

The contact with all the young, motivated surgeons across Europe wanting to rise the specialty of colorectal surgery above everything. This is extremely stimulating and inspires us to push ESCP globally.

Tell us your best ESCP conference anecdote?

As mentioned above, I took the EBSQ examination in 2003 in Siges near Barcelona. The oral parts were given in the hotel rooms of very famous colorectal surgeons (such as Lars Phalman and John Nicholls). The rooms were not always very tidy! After the exam, I went out to celebrate with other candidates from Spain, Sweden and Italy. People, I just met and still stayed in contact!

What would your one bit of advice for younger surgeons starting their career in colorectal surgery be?

Treat your patients well and with dignity. A happy patient will always speak highly of you. This is the best PR you can have.

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