Many thanks to those leaving the Guidelines Office

16 March 2012

Guidelines activities are ongoing throughout the year, but the Annual EAU Congress presents – aside from the presentation of two major guidelines publications – a convenient location and occasion to set up new expert panels, hand over tasks to successors, meet and refocus activities for the coming year.

Two panel chairs stepped down in Paris:

Dr. Pia Bader (Karlsruhe, Germany), who has been heading the General Pain Management guideline panel for close to 7 years, handed over this responsibility to her vice-chair, Dr. Alvaro Paez Borda (Madrid, Spain). Under her leadership the panel managed to present regular updates of this complex but important topic. In many European countries pain management will not be part of the remit of urologists, but this is one area where national practices considerably differ and usage assessment of the EAU guidelines clearly points to the fact that this particular topic is extremely important to include in the EAU Guidelines repository.

Also professor Arnulf Stenzl (Tübingen, Germany) relinquished his position as chair to his vice-chair professor Fred Witjes (Nijmegen, The Netherlands). Arnulf Stenzl headed the Muscle-invasive and Metastatic Bladder Cancer guidelines group since 2005 when the topic of bladder cancer was split up between Muscle-invasive and Non-muscle-invasive Bladder Cancer. Under his sage leadership this panel, most effectively, published an impressive number of documents, including a series of scientific publications in European Urology which have been amongst the highest cited scientific publications. Professor Stenzl has led his panel with a subdued but distinct sense of humour which will certainly stand him in good stead in his new position as chairman of the EAU Scientific Office. As successor of professor Freddie Hamdy he will have some big boots to fill which Arnulf will undoubtedly manage with the same grace and efficiency.

EAU members may be aware that the EAU Executive Committee members have special areas of interest assigned to them. Professor Christopher Chapple, as Executive Committee member overseeing the EAU educational efforts, had been assisting the Guidelines Office Board in this function for the past 8 years. His role was to provide guidance to the Guidelines Office (and yes, we all need that clearly), also representing the interests and furthering EAU Guidelines Office projects, within and outwith EAU platforms.

In Paris he stepped back from this position, taking over the chairmanship of the EAU International Relations Office. From a “guidelines point of view” we will certainly continue to reap the benefits from his guidance, but from a different perspective surely. We should like to thank him for putting up with what must have been a difficult task at times and wish him the best of luck in his new role.

The Guidelines Office Board members and EAU Executive Committee should like to extend a special “thank you” to the three of them and to a number of guidelines panel members who have decided to step back from their guidelines work.

We are aware that without your willingness to do all this work in your scarce free time, the EAU would not have such authoritative and high-quality guidelines publications. All we have been able to offer you in return was the “glory” and the opportunity to work with like-minded experts in your field.

We should also like to thank the following experts for their long term and greatly valued contributions to the EAU Guidelines project:

Prof.Dr. Hans-Peter Schmid, St. Gallen (CH) – Prostate Cancer panel
Prof.Dr. J-J. Patard, Paris (FR) – Renal Cell Cancer panel
Prof.Dr. I.C. Sinescu, Bucharest (RO) – Renal Cell Cancer panel
Mr. D.C. Hanbury, Stevenage (UK) – Renal Cell Cancer panel
Prof.Dr. M. Michel, Amsterdam (NL)  – Male LUTS panel
Dr. A. Neisius, Durham, North Carolina (USA) – Urinary Incontinence panel
Prof.Dr. G. de Meerleer, Ghent (BE) – General Pain Management panel
Prof.Dr. C. Süsal, Heidelberg (DE) – Renal Transplantation panel
Prof.Dr. M. Graefen, Hamburg (DE) – Reporting complications panel