Pioneer of Hand Surgery extending a helping hand to patients

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Pioneer of Hand Surgery extending a helping hand to patients

The art of history taking, the doctors’ human touch and the clinical acumen are unfortunately fast disappearing; being replaced by machine-based investigations. In fact, the clinical judgment and the in-depth knowledge of the subject are essential for ordering the correct/relevant investigations making the best use of the advancement in technology.

Academic & Professional details
Professor Prakash Kotwal is an Orthopedic Surgeon and Upper Extremity expert with an experience of over 40 years. He has served in AIIMS, New Delhi since 1977 and occupied various Faculty position, rising finally to the position of Senior Professor & Head of the Department of Orthopaedics at AIIMS, till May 2016.
He has been a visiting Professor of Orthopaedics to the BP Koirala Institute of Health Sciences, Dharan, Nepal in 2001. He is the Founder Chairman of the Hand Section of Indian Orthopedic Association and also been the President of the Indian Society for Surgery of Hand. He has been instrumental in promoting the specialty of Hand Surgery in India through his untenable zeal in teaching young orthopedic surgeons the art of Hand surgery through various Basis & Advanced Hand Courses and workshops conducted in the country. He is currently working as Chairman, Institute of Orthopaedics & Joint Replacement at Pushpawati Singhania Research Institute, New Delhi. He has performed more than 60,000 complex hand surgeries and is the most acclaimed Hand to Shoulder surgeon in this part of the world.

MEMBERSHIPS
Dr Kotwal has been associated with many International and National body for last 40 years. He has been associated with AO since 1983. AO is a Swiss originasation for research and development for the management of Trauma. He has been the AO Trustee since 2011 and represented India for five years. He was also an education officer for AOTrauma and has been instrumental in research, development and teaching of newer techniques in trauma care in India and Abroad.
He has been a President for the following Scientific association in the field of Orthopedics:
 Delhi Orthopedic Association
 Indian Society for Surgery of the Hand
Apart form above he is also a member of the following:
 Indian Orthopaedic Association
 Indian Society for Bone and Mineral Research
 Delhi Orthopaedic Association.
 North Zone Orthopaedic Association
 M.P. Chapter of Indian Orthopaedic Association.
 Indian Society for Surgery of the Hand.
 Association of Spine Surgeons of India
 Indian Association of Biomechanics.
 Founder member of Indian Society for Surgery of Hand
 Life Member Indian Orthopaedic Association.
 Life Member Delhi Orthopaedic Association.
 Life Member North Zone Orthopaedic Association
 Life Member M.P. Chapter of Indian Orthopaedic Association.
 Life Member Indian Society for Surgery of the Hand.
 Life Member Association of Spine Surgeons of India
 Life Member Indian Association of Biomechanics.

EDITORIAL BOARD AND JOURNAL REVIEWER
Professor Kotwal has served as Editor for numerous national and International Jounal for the last many years. He has immence experience in research both at basic and advanced level. He has contributes significantly towards the publication of the Indian Journal of Orthopaedics, an official publication of Indian Orthopaedic Association since 1988. He has been Editor of the Book of Abstracts published during the Annual Conference of the Indian Orthopaedic Association in Oct. 1987. He has been the Editorial Board Referee for “The Journal of Basic and Applied Biomedicine” a highly acclaimed International Journal. He has been the Guest editor for the Special issue of the Journal of International Medical Sciences Academy during the year 2000. Professor Kotwal has been the Nominated Reviewer of text book on Traumatology, by the National Book Trust of India, Sept., 1998 to 2001. He has also been the reviewer for Bones and Joints Update, Indian Journal of Pediatrics, Journal of Hand and Micro Surgery & text book on Orthopaedics by Elsevier Health Sciences.

ADVISOR
Dr Prakash Kotwal has been on the Panel of Experts, for providing medical cover to the Hon’ble Prime Minister of India. He has done surgery on erstwhile sitting Prime-Minister of India.
Dr Kotwal has been Honorary Consultant to the Hon’ble Vice President of India since 2002. He has been a Member, Panel of Specialists/ Super Specialists for contingency medical care arrangement for the Hon’ble President of India, since October 2013.
Chairman of a Committee at National Level 6
Nomination as Expert Member at Inter-National Level 2
Nomination as Expert Member at National Level 57
Chairman of Selection Committee at National Level 2
Chairman of Selection Committee at AIIMS 16
Member of Selection Committee at National Level 72
Member of Selection Committee at AIIMS 7
Chairman of various Committees at AIIMS 33
Vice-Chairman of various Committees at AIIMS 1
Member of High Powered Committees at AIIMS 6
Member of Various Committees at AIIMS 67
Chairman of The Governing Body 1
Member of The Governing Body 3
Medical Boards 4
Inspector, National Board of Examination 6
Inspector, Medical Council of India 13

ACADEMIC CONTRIBUTIONS
Dr. Prakash kotwal has pioneered the Hand and Micro vascular Surgery in India; established advanced hand and micro-vascular surgical facilities at AIIMS in 1982. Have been running specialty clinic- Hand Clinic ever since and receiving referrals form India and the SAARC region.
The area of expertise is Hand and Upper Extremity Surgery. Have been routinely performing the following surgical procedures for the reconstruction of the injured and congenitally deformed Hand, using micro-vascular surgical techniques, at the Institute.
Have extensive experience in complex surgery of upper extremity.
 Trauma of the upper extremity (Shoulder to finger tips)
 Complex trauma of upper extremity
 Neglected trauma of upper extremity
 Replacement Surgery of joints of the Upper Extremity
 Hemi-Replacement of Shoulder
 Total Shoulder Replacement
 Reverse Shoulder Replacement
 Total elbow replacement
 Revision Elbow Replacement
 Total replacement of Wrist
 MCP Joint Replacement(Small Joints of Hand)
 Tendon Transfers in Hand
 Micro-vascular surgery of Hand
 Replantation of severed (amputated) digits/extremities
 Toe to finger transfer
 Free Flap
 Nerve injury and micro surgery for nerve entrapment, repair & transfers
 Reconstructive surgery
 Rheumatoid Arthritis of hand
 Congenital deformity of Hand
 Sports Injury of Hand
 Ligament/ tendon reconstruction surgery
 Bony
The contribution of Dr. Prakash Kotwal in the field of Orthopaedics and particularly in the specialty of Hand and upper exterimity Surgery is noteworthy. He has authored 3 text books in Orthopaedics, edited many book and contributed 45 chapters in text books. Dr. Kotwal developed a Surgical Technique which has been incorporated in the Bible of Operative Orthopaedic Surgery Textbook. He has authored 80 scientific papers in indexed international journals and 70 papers in indexed national journals. He has delivered 20 prestigious orations Internationally and in Homeland, more that 600 guest lectures in national and 125 lectures in international conferences. He has chaired scientific sessions in more that 50 international and numerous national conferences. Dr Kotwal has been instrumental in formulating the Orthopaedics Curriculum taught across India as Chairman, Curriculum committee in Orthopaedics, constituted by the Medical Council of India. He has been Member of an Experts Committee to formulate the Curriculum and to examine the examination pattern of DNB examinations since 2007.
Dr Kotwal has been an academician par excellence throughtout his career. He has been thesis guide to 52 Orthopaedic surgeons who are now well established professionals in India and abrod. He has guided two Ph.D. students and one D.Sc student in Orthopaedic surgery. #

SERVICE TO THE SOCIETY
Dr. Prakash Kotwal has been instrumental in developing the specialty of Hand, upper extermity and Micro vascular Surgery in the country, which has been helpful in imparting standard of care to patients with hand and upper limb injuries. He is the Founder Chairman of the Hand Section of Indian Orthopedic Association.
Prof. Prakash P. Kotwal has been a key figure in raising the standard of trauma care to the international standards in India. He has been Trustee of AO foundation. He has also been the AO Education Officer for India responsible for conducting trauma education courses across the country and Asia Pacific region.

Reason for Join profession
I come from a small city, Ratlam, in Madhya Pradesh from a humble family background. In those days, nearly 50 years ago, the profession of a doctor was considered very respectable. To my tender mind also, a doctor’s profession stood at a high pedestal and appeared noble. Brought up in a small place I always dreamt of doing something meaningful for the society in a big way.

ACHIEVEMENTS AND AWARDS
Dr Prakash Kotwal has obtained Advanced Training in the treatment of fractures (Traumatology) by A.O. Techniques at the B.G. Unfallklinic, Tubingen, West Germany and Hand and Micro vascular Surgery at the Kleinert Institute for Hand and Microsurgery, Louisville, Kentucky, USA; and at the Hospital for Special Surgery, New York, New York, USA.
He has recived the prestigious “The Paul R Manske Award” for 2013 for the Best Upper Extremity Congenital Research Manuscript entitled “ A Comparison of Surgical Treatment and Non- operative Management for Radial Longitudinal Deficiency” Published in the J. Hand Surgery (European Volume) in 2012. This was an article with the greatest impact on the surgical care of the child’s hand for the best upper extremity congenital research manuscript published in the “Journal of Hand Surgery”. Dr Prakash Kotwal has been conferred with many international and national fellowships. Apart from the WHO and Indo – German Fellowship, he has also received the prestigious Fellowship of the National Academy of Medical Sciences (FAMS) and Fellowship of International Medical Sciences Academy (FIMSA). He has been awarded the “Distinguished Services Award” and “Dr. S. K. Mukherjee Chikitsa Seva Award” for contributions in the field of orthopaedics.

Early challenges
Since I come from a modest family background, I was conscious of the fact that I have to be independent as soon as possible which made me a responsible person and face the hardship of initial days of residency and job. The initial feeling of insecurity/uncertainty however faded out when I joined as a Faculty at the All India Institute of Medical Sciences (AIIMS), New Delhi. During my initial years as Faculty at AIIMS, the system of promotion to the next higher level was challenging. Each Faculty member had to face an open interview competing with applicants from India and abroad. This stimulated me to keep pace with the recent advances and also keep writing books, chapters in books and scientific research papers in national and international journals.

Professional Highs
It is indeed the God’s grace that I rose to the present position, professionally, coming from a modest background. Getting entry into the premier Institution, AIIMS, was a dream come true. AIIMS gave me tremendous experience, knowledge, professional recognition and also social status. I became Trustee of a very coveted international organization (called as AO) from Switzerland. I represented India in this Organization for 5 years. My experience and expertise in the field of Hand surgery gave me an opportunity to treat many VVIPs and operate upon the former Prime Minister of India.
I have been nominated to the Chair of many Committees at the national level and was a member of many scientific committees and Medical Council of India.

Management Thought
As Head of Department of Orthoipaedics at AIIMS, New Delhi for nearly a decade, I got ample administrative responsibilities. My managerial capabilities were also put to test as I always headed more than two other deaprtments /administrative resposibilities at AIIMS for nearly 15 years. This included In-charge (equvalent to Dean) of Research section at AIIMS. During all these years I lerant that the solution to a problem lies the problem itself, you only need to develop senses to fish it out.

Healthcare Vision
I firmly believe that machines, no matter what, cannot replace the human factor; they can certainly supplement the latter. This is particularly true in medicine. The art of history taking, the doctors’ human touch and the clinical acumen are unfortunately fast disappearing; being replaced by machine-based investigations. In fact, the clinical judgment and the in-depth knowledge of the subject are essential for ordering the correct/relevant investigations making the best use of the advancement in technology.

Inspiration
I got inspiration in my life from elders and my teachers. In the medical profession I derived inspiration from my two former bosses at AIIMS, but even my teachers in schools inspired me with certain qualities of theirs.
I learnt being perfectionist, particular and good surgery from my previous boss Prof. P. Chandra. I picked up tips in handling administrative matters from Prof. P.K. Dave, another former boss.
I still consider myself a learner and am always ready to pick up good things coming from any corner.

Family details
My wife, Arundhati, is my best friend, critic and an ideal companion. The heavy working schedule at AIIMS, academic writing commitments (such as books and scientific papers) and extensive travel in and out of country for delivering lectures in Conferences and attending meetings kept me very busy. She fully understood my work and commitment to the profession and provided me unconditional support. After an initial stint in research at AIIMS, New Delhi, she turned towards the glamorous profession of Beauty and Make-up.

Hobbies
My hobbies are – reading and photography, particularly medical photography.
Your most important priority if you were the Health Minister
The standard of medical care is centralized mostly in the major cities in the country. These facilities need to be decentralized by upgrading the hospitals in grade B & C cities. The facilities in these cities should be accessible, affordable and progressive, i.e., keeping pace with the developments in the technology. The patients will then not have to rush to the metros for every ailment, which is so expensive and beyond the reach of a common man.

Best place for vacation in India and Abroad
My favorite vacation spots in India are my home town, Ratlam, where I revive my fond memories of childhood and mingle with my old friends; and Kerala.
The overseas location for spending my vacation is Switzerland, which is equally beautiful both in summer and winter.

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