Embarking firsts: Our highlights of the EAU Exchange Programme

For 11 days, we participated in the EAU Exchange Programme which commenced in Paris, France and concluded in Amsterdam, the Netherlands.

Tue, 25 Jun 2024 • By Dr. Yoshiyuki Yamamoto (JP) and Hidenori Akaihata (JP)
Exchange ProgrammesRoupretVan MoorselaarWuJUAKUATUA
With other fellows, Prof. J. Van Moorselaar and Dr. H. Beerlage at the Amsterdam University Medical Center (UMC)

Under the guidance of Prof. Morgan Rouprêt (FR) at the University Hospital La Pitié-Salpêtrière in Paris, we observed procedures such as robotic-assisted laparoscopic nephroureterectomy and robotic-assisted laparoscopic pyeloplasty. We were impressed to see that a 4 cm or larger renal tumour with a buried type and irregular margins was partially resected by robot without exposing the tumour.

The robot-assisted artificial urinary sphincter implantation was a point of high interest as well because it has not been performed in Japan. Additionally, to see relatively young surgeons being carefully guided as they performed surgeries was also a highly-informative experience.

At the congress

We went to the recent EAU24 where we attended sessions focused on topics on such as prostate cancer and urothelial carcinoma, as well as, the Joint Session of the EAU and the JUA. The congress offered many sessions on robot-assisted surgery, and we were able to listen to lively heated discussions on robot-assisted living donor kidney transplantation and robot-assisted ureteral stricture surgery using the ileum. We gained a lot of new knowledge.

On the evening of 6 April, we attended the EAU International Friendship Dinner held at the InterContinental Paris Le Grand. We were impressed by the magnificent venue, which fit historical Paris. We had a great time with the members from South Korea and Taiwan while enjoying a luxurious French dinner. Later in the evening, we received these massive golden plaques in front of world-famous professors. The plaques were certificates of EAU-JUA International Academic Exchange Programme. This was a memory we will never forget.

In Amsterdam

After having a great time in Paris, we headed to Amsterdam. We met Prof. Jeroen van Moorselaar (NL) of the Amsterdam University Medical Center (UMC), who was an amiable and knowledgeable professor with great interest in various urological fields.

In terms of clinical practice, we observed the cultural differences between the Netherlands and Japan. We saw a gender reassignment surgery (female to male) which is a first for us. We were surprised to know that the procedure was covered by insurance. Furthermore, in the Netherlands, nurses can be direct assistants during robotic surgery as well.

On top of robot-assisted total prostatectomy and total cystectomy, we also observed phalloplasty, which was another first for us.

In the afternoon of 11 April, we cycled with several doctors from Amsterdam UMC and enjoyed the scenic city with its cobblestone streets, canals, and iconic houses. We also enjoyed a trip to the Rijksmuseum.

A sense of gratitude

During this programme, we were able to exchange various opinions and deepen our friendships with other participants through hospital tours and attending EAU24. With valuable knowledge and experience gained, our dedication to our clinical practice and research is strengthened.

We would like to express our deepest gratitude to the EAU and the JUA for giving us this precious opportunity, which would have been difficult to experience in Japan. Our special thanks also go to the hospital staff of the three healthcare centres for graciously accepting us.