The microsurgical laboratory in King Faisal Specialist Hospital and Research Centre was established by Dr. Eider Siquera in 1986. It has been specifically designed for training in microsurgery. Numerous surgeons have completed the course with different backgrounds in Neurosurgery, ENT, Plastic Surgery, Ophthalmology, Vascular Surgery, Pediatric Surgery, General Surgery, Urology and Gynecology. Basic surgical training is required to be able to perform in this course. Research assistants and veterinarians are also included in the training for microsurgical techniques. The aim of this course is to guide the trainee through a series of exercises to achieve eye-to-hand coordination and economy of motion under the microscope.
Microvascular techniques are used on the aorta of anesthetized rats since they are excellent models for this training, for many reasons. The diameter of the rat aorta ranges from 1.5-2.5mm; this represents the smallest vessel diameter that could be operated on clinically. It is very easy to test the results of the surgical maneuvers, and ultimately the end result of the microvascular anastamosis. The rat is inexpensive to obtain and to maintain, and it is easy to breed.
As of present, Dr. Essam Al-Shail is the course director and he is also one of the mentors of the workshop. He aims that microsurgery will be an integral part of a surgeon’s training in various fields and specialties.