How to Navigate a Scientific Meeting and Make It Worthwhile? A Guide for Young Orthopedic Surgeons

  • Darren de SA
  • Jayson Lian
  • Conor I. Murphy
  • Ravi Vaswani
  • Volker MusahlEmail author


Scientific meetings provide a unique opportunity within the academic and professional orthopedic community to further education, explore intellectual interests, share knowledge, network with colleagues, and find a welcomed reprieve from the hustle of clinical duties to revel in the company of like-minded individuals. Conscientious preparation and planning are indispensable leading up to the meeting in order to maximize utility and time. Understanding available resources and specific events encompassed within the meeting such as abstract presentations, poster tours, small-group “breakout” sessions, panel discussions, vendor exhibitions, and technical demonstrations and knowing how to make the best use of them demand its own research and execution of a “preoperative plan.” At the conclusion of these meetings, attendees should feel a rejuvenated spirit stemming from intellectual vivification, rekindling of old relationships, and forging of new ones. These efforts and takeaways then form the basis for future academic pursuits, research collaboration, and excitement for the next opportunity to partake in similar meetings.


Scientific meeting Networking Junior learner Roundtable Breakout session Panel discussion Symposium Podium presentation Instructional course lecture Vendor 


Glossary of Meeting-Specific Terms

Scientific meeting

Academic gathering of scientific professionals to discuss research and specialty-specific topics.


Forming connections between professionals that are typically used for future collaborations.

Junior learner

A young student or physician who attends meetings to expand his/her knowledge and form new relationships.


Conversation among experts typically regarding a topic.

Breakout session

Short session where a group of attendees discusses a central topic among each other.

Panel discussions

A small cohort of experts discussing a topic of interest in front of a large audience.


A formal discussion among experts in the field regarding a specific topic.

Podium presentation

Formal exhibition of a noteworthy research study, typically given in front of an audience.

Instructional course lecture (ICL)

An up-to-date educational series, given by a panel of experts, on a specific topic and/or procedure.


Medical equipment supplier companies present at medical conferences to advertise their product and negotiate partnerships with physicians and medical researchers.


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Copyright information

© ISAKOS 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  • Darren de SA
    • 1
  • Jayson Lian
    • 2
  • Conor I. Murphy
    • 1
  • Ravi Vaswani
    • 1
  • Volker Musahl
    • 1
    Email author
  1. 1.Department of Orthopaedic SurgeryUniversity of Pittsburgh Medical CenterPittsburghUSA
  2. 2.Albert Einstein College of MedicineBronxUSA

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