5000 surgeons from all over the globe gathered to learn and exchange ideas. Many techniques were presented—some promising, some not so promising, which must await the sieve of time. A great deal of credit for the success of the congress must be given to Program President Professor Alberto Montori of the University of Rome, "La Sapienza " and the committees who organized and coordinated this event. Every effort was made to secure outstanding surgeon-scientists to teach and present their experiences. In many instances, classical open surgical procedures were juxtaposed with laparoscopic approaches to assure a balanced presentation. Discussions such as those on open and laparoscopic hernia repair were often vigorous and partisan. The sturm und drang of these interactions, however, highlighted the main concerns of surgeons worldwide: patient welfare and the best treatment possible. In the instance of groin hernia repair it was quickly obvious that a great deal of experience had accumulated with the several laparoscopic approaches. Equally obvious was that, in expert hands, both open and laparoscopic hernia repair result in a very low incidence of recurrence. Th
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