The Council of FESSH holds its 23. European Board of Hand Surgery Diploma Examination during 2020 FESSH Congress in Basel, Switzerland. Any surgeon whose National Hand Society is member of the FESSH or IFSSH and who is interested in sitting this examination should make an online registration to apply for the examination.


MCQ test: 13 March 2020 (Friday) – 13:00-15:00 CET in different European cities. List of centers will be confirmed by January 2020.


Date: 1-2 June 2020 (Monday-Tuesday)

Venue: Congress Center Basel (Messeplatz 21, 4058 Basel, Switzerland)

Schedule: Exam will start cca 7:30 on Monnday with registration, 8:00 with a briefing and oral rounds start cca 8:30. Exam will last till cca 18:00 on Monday and till cca 15:00 on Tuesday with result announcement and handing over the diplomas. Please be present on both days as you will have one oral sessions on each day. Final schedule of oral rounds will be announced on site.


Any surgeon interested in sitting this examination should send an application online through the below link as soon as possible and certainly not later than November 30th of the preceeding year.

The applicant should provide personal data and proof of his or her professional experience by submitting the documents listed below. These should be uploaded to the website in a form of a pdf file.

The Examination Committee reserves the right to reject applications from those whose training, qualifications and log book they consider inadequate or incomplete.

The candidates must have had their training in Hand Surgery in an accredited centre in one of the member countries of IFSSH.

Online application site

Application deadline: 30 November 2019
Acceptance notification: 15 January 2020

Documents to upload

  • CV and photocopy of personal data page of passport
  • Photocopy of accreditation certificate in Hand Surgery, and/or Orthopaedic Surgery, and/or Plastic Surgery, and/or General Surgery
  • Proof of membership in a national hand society if a member thereof
  • Surgical logbook
  • Consolidation sheet
  • Training post diary
  • Instructional courses list
  • Research activity list
  • Presentations list
  • Publications list

Log book of operation records

You are required to record all hand operations at which you assisted, or which you yourself performed during your tenure of all the above posts. Working diary entries should be completed after each operation as follows:

Date: Date of operation
Patient’s initials: Initials only to maintain confidentiality
Nature of operation: Description of the operation, including all the procedure in a major           operation.
P/PA/A: P=performed independently by yourselfPA=performed with assistance of an experienced Hand Surgeon

A=operations at which you aided as first assistant.

Each diary sheet should be signed at the foot by your supervisor

Where complex procedures are involved that include, for example, free tissue transfer or reconstruction by tissue expansion, you may include these reconstructive procedures in addition to the other major procedures. In other multiple procedures you may list only one component.

Computerised records of operative experience

A computer generated record of a candidate’s experience will be accepted by F.E.S.S.H. provided it contains the information required in this log book and provided it is certified by the candidate’s supervising consultant. If the computerised record fulfils these requirements, it will not be necessary for the candidate to fill in the operation record pages in the log book, but the record of training posts held, the consolidation sheets and the record of academic activities must be completed.

Consolidation sheets

These should show the cumulative totals of the various operations of which you have experience as independent operator (P), as surgeon with supervisory assistance by your consultant (PA) and as assistant (A). The required number of procedures should be performed as independent operator (P) or as surgeon with supervisory assistance by your consultant (PA).

The recommended numbers for each category of operations shown on the cumulative sheets should not be regarded as absolute requirements but more as guidelines. Moreover because of the differences in the availability of surgical procedures performed at any given hand surgical institution, it will be possible to compensate for the deficiency in the number of operations in one group by performing an increased number of operations in another group of equal value, eg. microvascular for congenital malformations.

Training posts diary

You are required to list in chronological order all the training posts in surgery which you have held. In particular hand appointments undertaken during your training or accreditation in Orthopaedic, Plastic or Hand Surgery should be listed as well as appointments at post-accreditation level or during the tenure of a Hand Fellowship.

Academic records

This should include:

  1. Any special instructional courses attended.
  2. Research undertaken.
  3. Presentations at scientific meetings.
  4. Published work – all candidates will be expected to have published at least one paper and to have made presentations at various categories of scientific meetings.

Guidelines for Advanced Hand Surgery Training Requirements:

The goals of advanced training are to gain continued knowledge and experience in the following areas:

  1. normal and pathological anatomy, aetiology, epidemiology, pathogenesis and prognosis of injuries, diseases and malformations of the hand,
  2. in clinical, radiological and operative diagnosis of injuries, diseases and malformations of the hand, including arthroscopy and imaging techniques (standard X-rays, CT and MRI),
  3. indications, planning and management of conservative and operative treatment of injuries, diseases and malformations of the hand, including microsurgical procedures,
  4. postoperative management and programmes of rehabilitation, as well as indications for therapeutic exercises, occupational therapy and physiotherapy, and the use of splints and protheses for the hand,
  5. disability evaluations of patients following an injury (minimum of 5 evaluations).

The training in Hand Surgery consists essentially of one to two years’ training in an accredited centre and the performance of the suggested number of operations listed in the Consolidation Sheets.

Further information

The Chairman and Co-chairman are always available for advice.