When I started the course I thought that I would never ever learn how to implant a catheter in the carotid artery of a mouse without killing the animal. And now?! It takes me less than 10 minutes until the catheter is fixed in the artery without any loss of blood and the animals are running around in their cage a few hours later.
Prof. Remie is an oracle of animal science. For me, he achieves balancing the complexities of the many aspects of surgery, without overloading you with information, while adding warmth and a touch of humour in his delivery, along with the occasional well-placed anecdote. I have yet to meet anyone with such a comprehensive knowledge and understanding of anatomy and surgery combined with the experience of in vivo research. His teaching style is direct, yet never condescending, and he is a master of patience, which means you always get the answer you need to whichever question you might want to ask about a technique you are learning. Moreover, not only is Prof. Remie a font of knowledge, but he is also eager to provide pertinent research papers and equipment/consumable catalogues for reading around the techniques and establishing your own surgical setup.
Throughout the course, Prof. Remie was always quick to demonstrate his care for the animals, in terms of adequate anaesthesia, analgesia and asepsis, as well as the benefits of establishing good surgical technique to minimise unnecessary injury and reduce the number of animals required to obtain results for one’s research.
One of Prof. Remie’s tenets is to be goal-oriented: once I had exhausted the queries I had about the ins and outs of the techniques I was learning, it was possible, in the latter stages of the course to fully appreciate the benefits of being focused on your surgical objective.
I was glad to have chosen the 5-day course option as this allowed me to get a handle on the core course techniques as well as have a good opportunity to become confident with my custom program of blood pressure telemetry probe implantation and LAD ligation.
I left the course with more than I had anticipated; learning extra skills and feeling confident in knowing what I needed to do to establish the techniques back in my lab. At the end of the last day I felt exhilarated that I had been able to participate in such an outstanding surgical training course, but also saddened that, the next morning, I would not be returning to learning something new and exciting with Prof. Remie.
The two things that become immediately apparent when following one of Prof. Remie’s courses on experimental microsurgery is his quiet passion for the best possible quality of work and his constant insistence on ”goal orientation”. Later, the participant realizes that this gentle perfectionism roots in a wide-ranging knowledge of anatomy, practical experiences with various animal models, comparative physiology, and anaesthesiology. His teaching can be described as ”interactive ex-cathedra” with an engaging presentational style and seamless transitions between slide-based information and practical, CCTV-based demo’s. Despite the more traditional format, it is complemented with a genuine empathy not only for his students but also for the experimental animals, the former combined with shrewd psychological insights.
We were all encouraged to submit, in advance, our different areas of interest and the themes we wanted to figure prominently in the course. This made for widely different subjects of teaching. Prof. Remie’s teaching is nevertheless so accomplished that he manages to interact individually with each student in different ways to expose him/her to the toughest possible challenge whilst, at the same time, pushing for the best possible response. This in itself is an accomplishment of the first order, made even more remarkable by the fact that the class I attended had extremely different starting competencies. The gems of theoretical and practical knowledge that he freely shares with you never feel pedantic but the relevant facts are mentioned at the appropriate moments in a way that you’d wished you should have known this all along. ”Forschung und Lehre”, said that giant of pre-Darwinian science, Alexander, Freiherr von Humboldt. The ”Lehre” is without question already in an elite league of its own; the ”Forschung”, one discovers later, are his own extremely interesting and important contributions to lab animal science in particular and operative methods in general. In short, the most advantageous combination of competencies, a Humboldtian teacher-scientist.
This was an experience that by far exceeded all my expectations. René is a wonderful person with a passion to teach others the amazing microsurgical techniques he is mastering to perfection.
“The course in experimental research techniques will get you up to speed with all the microsurgical procedures required for your project in no time. I participated in the course as a total beginner in microsurgery and 5 days later I was able to perform successfully the microsurgical procedure I needed for my research. The course gave me both a theoretical and practical background and it was tailored to my needs. The instructors, René and Irene, were wonderful! They guided me throughout the hands-on training and shared with me tips on how I will improve my technique and experimental protocol. Overall, I strongly recommend this course to anyone interested in establishing a new in vivo model that requires microsurgical skills.”
I attended a tailor-made 5-day course “Transient middle cerebral artery occlusion in mice” in March 2010. This was by far the best course I’ve ever had. I came with limited micro-surgical skills, but in just a few days I succeeded in performing a very complicated operation. This had never been possible without René’s vast experience and calm teaching style. His surgical capability exceeds anything I have ever seen and he manages to share his knowledge in a highly enthusiastic yet comfortable way. We worked hard, focused, and concentrated in a working environment filled with laughter, praise, jokes, and inspirational conversation. René is not only a super-surgeon but also a wonderful human being with a lot of life experience to learn from. I came with a lot of problems surgical as well as practical and René came with many possible solutions both in regards to anesthesia, analgesia, setup problems, experimental design, etc. For me personally, this course has saved months of hard work and given me a much better experimental setup as well as made me a better surgeon. Thank you, René !!!
I recently attended the Module C 5-day microsurgical course specialising in radiotelemetry implantation at René Remie Surgical Skills Centre. I would highly recommend any of the courses available to anyone who is looking to begin or improve upon microsurgical techniques in vivo. The facilities at the RRSSC were fantastic; I was genuinely surprised at how much I gained from the course. Prof. Remie has extensive knowledge of not only surgical techniques, but also anaesthesia, asepsis and anatomy, not to mention his historical knowledge on the subject! Having come from a background of some limited surgical experience I found this course extremely helpful. I came away not only feeling competent in the cannulation skills I had learnt throughout the week, but I was also given a lot of useful information to take back to my lab. The course is incredibly well organised, with each programme being tailored to your individual needs. Prof. Remie is very approachable should you have any questions (there were many), and really goes out of his way to inform his students of as much as possible, without the feeling of being overwhelmed at all.
Thank you very much for the opportunity to attend your Module B surgical course. I enjoyed it very much! It was very informative and I came away with detailed knowledge, to help me perform MI in my institute. The class and surgical room where great, the presentation of the material was easy to comprehend and follow. You did brilliant job with sharing theory as well as practical skills. I was impressed with the organisation of the course. Everything from transport to meals was very well planned. I also enjoyed meeting your family and heaving meal with them. My knowledge about MI surgery was very limited before the course. In only 5 days I learned a lot. This and the materials provided, will be a big help with starting MI in my institute.
In June 2018, I attended the 5-day iPRECIO pump implantation course, by far the best course I ever experienced. The balance between theory and practice was perfect and the close guidance during surgical skills training was very helpful. Definitely a recommendation for everyone performing surgeries on mice!
I attended a 5-day course at the RRSSC in February 2012 and found it both hugely challenging and rewarding. I gained lots of practical experience and really enjoyed the lectures. I thought I had significant knowledge on the subject before attending the course but the quality and depth of teaching on the course made the whole subject make much more sense to me. What particularly impressed me about the course (and Professor Remie) was the breadth of teaching from the simple to the complex. By the end of the course I was happy that I had been able to learn about everything that I had wanted to (and more besides). A fantastic course – I would sincerely recommend this course to both surgeons and Biomedical scientists.
It is a very professionally run course with a nice balance between theory and practice with the focus on the practical work.
For me personally this course has saved months of hard work and given me a much better experimental setup as well as made me a better surgeon.
I attended a 5-day rodent surgery training session with RRSSC in October 2020. This training occurred at the start of my PhD and I am very glad that I had this training so early on in my career. René’s knowledge and experience are phenomenal and I believe that having this training has provided me with a brilliant base set of skills to carry forwards in my research.
René explained the key parts of rodent based research – including suturing, anaesthesia, instruments, asepsis, surgical techniques, and using a microscope. The way in which he explains their importance in research means that you understand why you are doing different processes, not just that you have to do them – I found this very beneficial and it has given me more understanding as to why certain things are done the way they are. René’s knowledge of the history behind rodent surgery and research is also outstanding, which brings even more of a relevance to the work that you are doing.
The second part of the course was tailored to the different techniques that we needed to learn for our own research. For me, this included injections into the hepatic portal vein (HPV), injections under the kidney capsule, and an attempt at catheterising the HPV in mice. René explained to us how to do the specific techniques, watched us perform them, and gave us tips on how to refine our technique to ensure more success and in ways which are more beneficial to the recovery of the animal, which was especially helpful as I had no previous microsurgery experience. René’s ‘goal-orientated’ methodology and constant reminding of basic skills ensured that we were performing complex procedures in ways that were sustainable for when this is applied to actual experiments, and in the best interests of the animals.
Overall, I would highly recommend training with RRSSC, especially at the beginning of a career in animal experiment-based research. René and his wife, Elizabeth, were very welcoming and you instantly felt at ease to ask any questions or ask for advice throughout the week.
Attending the 5 day microsurgery course at René Remie’s Surgical Skills Centre has been the single best investment for my research career to date. This is a highly informative, superbly organised course which delivers vast amounts of knowledge and advice. The theoretical lectures are delivered in an interesting and casual manner. Plenty of time remains for the practical learning, using fantastic equipment and ideal surgical stations. Experiencing this ideal set up has helped me at home to set up a surgical suite that is fit for my purpose. There was no limit to the support and advice I received whilst navigating practical microsurgery techniques. No question remained unanswered, and no demonstration was too much to ask. I cannot recommend this course enough. The only regret I have about this course at the RRSSC is that I didn’t attend earlier.
The course (November 2013) run by René and Delphine was really excellent. I would highly recommend it particularly for someone like me with no previous surgical experience. The course content was pitched at the right level and communicated extremely well. The balance between theory and practice was excellent and I really felt that I learned so much within such a short time. My goal was to learn the skin transplant model but I exceed my expectations and the additional skills learned, for example, the catheterization of a number of vessels will open possibilities in our research that were not previously considered. René was a wonderful host and an excellent teacher. The course was extremely relaxed and enjoyable.
I attended the ABS-course at the RRSSC in September 2016. It was probably the most informative course I have been on in my academic career to-date. There was only a small group of us on the course which was great and meant we could ask all the questions we needed. The ability of attendees was very wide, ranging from myself (complete beginner with catheter surgery) to some who had 18 years’ experience in the field. Despite this we all received the specialist training we required which was brilliant. Great course, great value for money and good fun! Would definitely recommend training at this surgical skills centre!
I recently attended a Microsurgical Course run by Professor René Remie at the Surgical Skills Centre in Almere Stad, Netherlands where I received first class training in microsurgical techniques performed on the Rat using a Leica Microscope. The operating station was set up to a high quality and there were many books and papers available for reference. I was initially trained on a ‘Latex rubber’ Rat complemented with lectures received in the morning each day on all other subjects relevant to surgery such as Equipment, Anaesthesia, Asepsis and Anatomy that was demonstrated on a larger than life anatomical rat model. This gave me the background training required so that I could then proceed to undertake the techniques that I had learnt ‘In-Vivo’. Professor René Remie was extremely helpful and friendly and would demonstrate any technique specifically requested. I would recommend that anyone working in the scientific field who is interested in performing surgery or is currently performing surgery on Laboratory Animals should definately attend this course. They will obtain many new ideas with a wealth of information as I did. René’s skilled teaching on the art of performing microsurgery combined with his huge concern for animal welfare enabled me to receive the best training and to become proficient on my required specialist techniques by the end of the course.
I would recommend that anyone working in the scientific field who is interested in performing surgery or is currently performing surgery on Laboratory Animals should definately attend this course. They will obtain many new ideas with a wealth of information as I did.
In June 2018, I had the great pleasure to take part in a course organized by RRSSC and Primetech on the implantation of iPrecio mini pumps into the blood vessels of mice and rats. Thanks to Rene’s valuable tips and perfectly organized training, I have almost immediately performed the procedure of the jugular and femoral vein catheterization in mice and rats. Something that previously seemed to be impossible for me. With the help of René, it took around 20 minutes to get the catheter into the vessel of choice. René is a very hospitable man with a passion for science and I admire and appreciate his great knowledge. He can talk about animals, their anatomy, and pharmacology so that the listener can not get away from the lecture. I definitely recommend everyone to come to Almere and take part in one of these rodent training courses.
I had a great 3 days (radio telemetry) course and learned a lot. I would really hope to be able to come for the microsurgery and experimental technique course at some point in the future.
I have never attended a training course where I felt more welcome, nor had my needs catered for so perfectly. The course truly was tailor-made to the specific procedures I needed to learn whilst providing a solid grounding in the basics so that I can advance and refine my own work in the future. The training team was most generous with their time and expertise. Rene’s experience is invaluable; I left with far more knowledge, understanding, and skill than I ever expected to obtain in 5 days – there are elements to his teaching that you simply won’t find anywhere else, and his passion for animal welfare is clear. Those who have benefited from this training will be practicing the highest standards from both ethical and technical aspects – I would consider this training compulsory for any researcher planning to incorporate microsurgery into their work.
I attended the 5 days-module B course in May 2016 and would warmly recommend this course to anyone wanting to improve their surgical skills and knowledge in microsurgery. The technical facilities were great, the teacher (Rene) was excellent and the course program well thought of. I learned so much during these 5 days – including good surgical practice, choosing the right equipment, asepsis, anesthesia and excellent surgical techniques that will introduce major improvements at our facility. I never thought I would be able to do the jugular and femoral vein catheterization, but Rene just said “of course you will”, and I did!. He is an calm and encouraging educator with endless knowledge about everything related to microsurgery (I especially enjoyed the anecdotes about Halsted and the other “big guys”.) Rene and his wife are very welcoming and you will feel like home in their excellent care. I hope I will get the change to come back and attend another excellent course RRSSC!
I completed two training modules at RRSSC and only thanks to René, I dare to call myself a veterinary surgeon. Owing to René’s unmatched surgical skills, inextinguishable enthusiasm for teaching, patience with inexperienced students, top level course programs and technical facilities, I learned everything I needed to run a high standard veterinary clinic. This includes good surgical practice – Halsted principles, perioperative care, pain management and respecting animal welfare – as well as state of the art surgical techniques that will introduce major improvements in veterinary medicine. Finally, I could dispose of numerous “bad habits” and replace them by “good behavior” in the operation theatre. Therefore I warmly recommend the RRSSC training to all veterinary practitioners; what is more, I think this training is a must for anyone who performs or plans to perform surgery.
In April 2012 I had the pleasure of attending a course in microsurgical techniques at René Remie Surgical Skills Centre in Almere, The Netherlands. This was an experience that by far exceeded all my expectations. René is a wonderful person with a passion to teach others the amazing microsurgical techniques he is mastering to perfection. René has a way of making everyone around him in a good mood and at the same time push you forward as hard as possible to make you learn far more than you thought possible in a 5-day course. The program for the course will be modified specially to your needs in a way to facilitate the steepest learning curve I have ever experienced. One of the mantras René will say over and over again is to work “Goal Oriented” when performing microsurgery and this is something he also uses in his way of teaching, there was a clear goal for my course and René did everything possible for me to reach it without wasting any time at all on unnecessary things. I managed to reach my goal and surpass it, that is as with everything else René does he always seems to reach the goal with perfect results and a smile on his face. Thank you very much for a wonderful experience in your Surgical Skills Centre.
We are now using what we learnt on the course. I believe we are able to make it work. That was easy! and that will be easy.
From my experience on the 3-day radiotelemetry course, I would absolutely recommend this, or indeed any of the courses to anyone, to those with plenty of in vivo experience as much as those with only a little. The breadth and depth of René’s skill and know-how and his ability to get key messages across are second to none, all within a friendly atmosphere conducive to asking questions, promoting discussions and getting the right help at the right time. A thoroughly excellent course.
From my experience on the 3-day radiotelemetry course, I would absolutely recommend this, or indeed any of the courses to anyone, to those with plenty of in vivo experience as much as those with only a little.
René Remie is watching you!” That Is the feeling I still have during my operations…although my 3-day-radio-telemetry course was already 2 months ago! When I started the course I thought that I would never ever learn how to implant a catheter in the carotid artery of a mouse without killing the animal. And now?! It takes me less than 10 minutes until the catheter is fixed in the artery without any loss of blood and the animals are running around in their cage a few hours later. I had to learn not to lose my ease of mind during the surgical training and I always had and still have the voice of René Remie in my mind that takes me back to the important things that I have to pay attention to. I think that he has the feeling to treat every kind of person in the right way to bring him/her to their own personal goal. I also learned a lot about microsurgical suture materials and techniques, ECG- and Blood pressure-measurement, radio telemetry, anesthesia, asepsis, and anatomy.
In the end, I can say it was the best way to learn about these microsurgical techniques and I can just recommend everyone who wants to work in a proper and perfect way to take part in one of his courses!
Prof Remie’s insulin clamp course was excellent and really surpassed my expectations. In short I left feeling fully prepared to set up the technique in my home lab. This has been borne out with early surgical success (in terms of catheterisation) and enough know how to begin to run the clamp experiments themselves. The two course leads provide an incomparable set of skills. Prof Remie lends his years of knowledge and expertise in the surgical techniques (bilateral carotid and jugular indwelling lines) and his training facility is fantastic (beautifully equipped and excellent visuals). Dr Nielsen’s clamp expertise are very much linked to the Vanderbilt standards, but he himself has spent many years perfecting the technique in Copenhagen and so he brings both sound technical advice but also expert knowhow (and lots of tips to avoid set up obstacles). Both teachers have been responsive to subsequent questions. The course materials were extremely comprehensive.
I thought I had significant knowledge on the subject before attending the course but the quality and depth of teaching on the course made the whole subject make much more sense to me.
This is a letter to explain what the René Remie microsurgery course has meant in my career. First of all, I am writing this letter because I feel I must be grateful to this awesome professor. I also should apologize for my English, it is not the best and I am not sure if I will be able to explain all the things I want to explain but I am going to try it.
I am a young Spanish orthopedic surgeon. I would like to become a hand surgeon and as a hand surgeon, you should be trained in microsurgical skills. I attended a five-day microsurgery course last February and it has been a great and wonderful experience!! You are trained personally and under the close supervision of professor Remie.
First of all, I just can say that this is an absolutely recommendable experience for someone that looks for training in microsurgery. You find in professor Remie an incredible person that makes you feel like working at home, receiving theoretical classes, and performing surgeries. He corrects you every moment but allows you time to perform surgeries. I did epineural nerve anastomoses, end-to-end and end-to-side anastomoses of arteries and veins even performing some surgeries like portacaval shunt. He shows you how something that you thought you will not be able to do (because I thought at the beginning that I was not going to be able to perform such wonderful things in just five days) can be accomplished in a very easy way. Every day that you are taken to the next step, being corrected in all the ways and, at the same time, he tells you tricks to be faster and do the surgeries in the most perfect way. You will get from him all the answers you need. In his lab, you can also find numberless books and publications to learn microsurgical techniques and he shows you where you can find the things you need. At the end of the course, he also gives advice on where you can find instruments and other materials to compose your own microsurgery tools set. It is just a very complete course and I just can say that it worth all the money you pay.
Anyone who wishes to develop microsurgical skills could benefit from this course. It offers a very nice introduction to the exciting world of microsurgery.
The structure of the course is well balanced between theory and practice. The course is very flexible organised, in such a way that the instructors are trying to adapt it to you.
I attended an adapted 3-day course from 25th to 27th April 2012. It will help me a lot in my future research work. I am a general surgeon and worked in clinics for about 8 years. I also performed animal experiments before, such as partial hepatectomy, intra portal vein transplantation, hepatocytes isolation. I could do these animal experiments, but I still had some questions. I needed to improve my skills in animal surgery to do them perfectly. I took my questions (and also my colleague’s questions) to René’s course. René taught me by himself. He has more than 30 years of experience in animal experiments and microsurgery. I realized that we could improve our animal experiments with the teacher’s instructions and make them more perfect. In a short period of time, we learned all kinds of tricks from him. I also learned some microsurgical techniques. I would like to suggest, that the M.D./ Ph.D. students or postdocs who want to learn and improve the animal experimentation skills should come to René. You will get an excellent course from him.
I will recommend these courses to everybody who wants to learn all about microsurgery.
First of all, I just can say that this is an absolutely recommendable experience for someone that looks for training in microsurgery.