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Keep the Change

Panchbhavi, Vinod K. MD, FACS, FAOA, FABOS, FAAOS

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Techniques in Foot & Ankle Surgery: March 2020 - Volume 19 - Issue 1 - p 1
doi: 10.1097/BTF.0000000000000267
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At a recent meeting someone who was promoting a minimally invasive technique was quoting “If you are doing the same thing you did many years ago, it means that you have not made any progress.” You are not moving into the 21st century. The implication is that you are not making any attempts to be better; you are not keeping up with innovations or you are not applying the innovations in other fields to advance your own field. In short, if you are not changing what you do, you may not be the best you can be. You may be in that comfort zone and not challenging yourself or pushing the boundaries.

The flip side to keep changing is that you don’t want to argue with the success you have with status-quo; changing just for the sake of changing is foolhardy. Don’t rush where angels tread. Let others take the risk and determine if the change is safe and it is for the better. Humans are creative. Creativity will not change and human nature in general is to seek or push for change, as there is always that room to improve. Not all changes are successful or immediately successful, but the attempts can help push the envelope in the direction we seek to go.

Change can paradoxically take you back many years, such as when you come to realize the benefits of using reusable shopping bags instead of disposable plastic bags; or going back to drinking tap water instead of bottled water. We have seen this with current renaissance in hallux valgus correction. Metatarso-cuneiform fusion advocated by Paul Lapidus many years ago for hallux valgus correction seems to be re-emerging but with a twist and with helpful innovations in other fields. The use of cutting guides which were not available in his era certainly makes this difficult operation less challenging technically and more reproducible and is taking us back to a technique that was advocated many years ago. Here change has helped resurgence of an old technique. Change is a reality. Something that will not change, is change itself!

We are grateful to have Dr Victor Valderrabano serve as the Guest Editor for this issue. In his long career, his creativity has brought innovative changes to this field. You will find other innovators and authorities who look for that room for improvement and strive to keep the change.

Vinod K. Panchbhavi, MD, FACS, FAOA, FABOS, FAAOS

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