5/04/2019 от нас ушёл мой друг и ментор Jeff Mast. Jeff died this morning - peacefully. End of an Era!
From: AO North America
Sent: Friday, April 5, 2019 4:17 PM
To: Djoldas Kuldjanov
Subject: Tribute to Jeffrey Welling Mast, MD
Jeff Mast MD, renowned AO surgeon, teacher, and mentor passed away peacefully today. Below is a tribute written by some of his close friends. We send our deepest condolences to his family.
AO North America
Tribute to Jeffrey Welling Mast, MD
As we reflect on important people we encounter in our lives, one singular individual stands usually stands out above all others, as having the most dramatic effect on the course and direction we have chosen in our professionalcareers. To many of us who have spent our careers in the AO Foundation, that individual was Jeffrey Welling Mast, MD. It is a great honor to write this tribute for our long-term mentor, critic, teacher, and most important of all, our very close friend.
Jeffrey Welling Mast was born September 7, 1940, in Easton, New York. Jeff was the son of a renowned artist/educator, Gerald Mast. Jeff’s legendary pre-operative planning and operative skills reflected this artistic background. An outstanding athlete, he was an expert skier and was a walk-on to the University of Colorado football team. His career included an early Peace Corps participation in Vietnam and Tibet into which he enlisted following a Medicine internship. A random medical encounter with the wife of a hotel owner in Katmandu was responsible for Jeff finding his place in surgery. As head of the Peace Corps in the Southeast Asia area, and later director of healthcare efforts in Tibet, Jeff was asked to accompany the wife of a local Katmandu Russian hotel owner on an air evacuation medical mission to seek specialized care in Bern, Switzerland. Jeff was introduced to Maurice Muller, he became fascinated with Muller’s surgical skills, ultimately influencing him to enter into orthopedic surgery and specialize in fracture fixation, nonunion, bio-regenerative hip salvage and osteotomy of the hip and knee deformities.
After completing orthopaedic training at University of Southern California Los Angeles County Hospital, he had various practice locations and training, eventually spending two years in Bern, Switzerland. The time he spent in Bern resulted in a career-long friendship with Reinhold Ganz. This friendship resulted in development of a safe method of performing periacetabular osteotomy and bioregenerative surgical treatment of hip disease, which created tremendous opportunities to improve patients with congenital hip dysplasia and Perthes disease. As a result of the friendship and collaboration with Ganz, these two surgeons became the top two contemporary hip preservation and reconstructive surgeons in the world. Jeff’s career was focused on developing and learning new techniques and perfecting them. Jeff also had a close friendship with another contemporary orthopaedic icon, the esteemed acetabular surgeon Emile Letournel. He would travel extensively with Emile and his “Bande of Letournel” worldwide, teaching their craft.
In 1989, together with Drs. Ganz and Jakob, Jeff wrote the book “Planning and Reduction Techniques in Fracture Surgery”. This book singularly changed orthopaedic trauma surgery. The book’s deviation from rigid AO doctrine was initially sharply criticized by previous AO generations as heresy. However, using incredibly detailed imaging, it promoted the concepts of preoperative planning, using the plate implant as a reduction instrument, the concept of minimally invasive surgery, restoration of extremity length and axis, using implants to perform the reduction, and the concept of indirect reduction and bridging of comminuted fracture zones were developed. Today, the study of this book is essential to the training of the modern orthopedic trauma surgeon.
Jeff’s uncanny ability to draw the skeleton, the perfect osteotomy angle of correction, the appropriate implant size and dimension, (usually a blade plate), and then be able to overlay his preoperative plan on the postoperative radiograph to be exactly perfect to his final surgical result, without using templates, was mesmerizing.
The consummate educator, Jeff was frequently observed to be the last person to leave the classroom or teaching laboratory, where he had spent time addressing a range of questions, from the easiest to the most complex operative technique. He was more often than not the teacher’s teacher. In his later years, he would not hesitate to travel any distance to help his disciples with difficult surgical cases and preoperative planning. These types of visits were unique to Jeff, and an invaluable surgical and social experience for all of us lucky enough to have “The Master” present in our operating rooms. We, who knew him personally, as well as the thousands of students he taught throughout his professional life, are indebted to this man for his erudite, visionary teaching, his pursuit in the achievement of the perfect operative result, and his unending courage to take on increasingly more difficult cases. His impact on the advancement of orthopaedic trauma and reconstructive surgery cannot be measured.
With Jeff’s passing, The AO Foundation and AO North America’s “Camelot Era” has lost its “Knight in Shining Armor”. This is an end of an era when absolute excellence was the only acceptable result to the Master. Every implant, screw, plate or nail had to be in the correct position, the correct axis with the correct amount of compression, to obtain his approval. Every implant and screw had a purpose to create the perfect reduction and compression, without additional hardware according to the “MINI-MAX” principles. It is our wish that his memory be never forgotten, that his preoperative planning skills still be taught at every AO Course, and the recognition of his accomplishments and techniques be preserved for future generations. We all stand on Jeffrey Mast’s shoulders when we treat each and every orthopaedic trauma and reconstructive surgery patient.
Eric E. Johnson, M.D.
Keith A. Mayo, M.D
Joel M. Matta, MD
Brett Bolhofner, MD
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