World Obesity Day 2020

Message by Dr. Marios Pedonomou

The World Obesity Federation predicts that by 2025 over 1 billion people will have obesity and 177 million adults will have severe obesity, but the disease still carries substantial misconceptions and stigma, representing significant barriers to its prevention and treatment. Many still consider obesity a lifestyle choice, often blaming it on a lack of will power or inactivity that is best treated with diet and exercise alone.

However, obesity is now recognized by most major medical groups as a complex chronic disease caused by interactions between genetic, behavioral, socioeconomic and environmental factors. The rising global epidemic of obesity demands a global response that breaks down the barriers to effective prevention and treatment. That’s why a coalition of medical organizations that spans the world have come together for a new unified World Obesity Day on March 4, 2020.

This year’s theme for World Obesity Day is “the roots of obesity,” focusing on eliminating stigma and improving understanding of obesity so that more patients have greater access to safe and effective treatments.

Patients with obesity deserve to feel supported by their healthcare providers with treatments that give them the best chance at improved health outcomes. Michelle Vicari, bariatric surgery patient and advocate, asks healthcare providers to “explain to us the science of obesity, give us understanding and support, help us build a team and provide us with resources.”

Many healthcare providers are more willing to address the consequences of obesity rather than the disease of obesity itself, despite the availability of safe and effective treatments. Multiple clinical guidelines recommend involvement of a physician and treatment that goes beyond diet and exercise alone for obesity, and particularly for severe obesity where bariatric surgery is the most effective treatment available, yet is rarely utilized. Research shows 80-90% of people with obesity who lose weight with diet and exercise regain it. For severe obesity, it’s even worse—men only have a 1 in 1,290 chance of reaching a healthy body weight without bariatric surgery while women have a 1 in 677 chance. Despite these realities, obesity patients still face significant challenges to receiving more effective long-term treatments.

We are committed to fight the stigma and to improve access to education around bariatric surgery for patients with obesity. Our aim is through a multidimensional approach to help obese or morbidly obese people and demonstrate the benefits of bariatric surgery for those who have the indication for surgery.

Marios Pedonomou MD, MSc, PhD, FASMBS
Consultant Surgeon
Associate Professor of Surgery
Aretaeio Hospital Nicosia
T +357 22 200 412 | F +357 22 512 372

Aretaeio Hospital
55-57 Andreas Avraamides Street, 2024 Strovolos,
Nicosia, Cyprus

Newsletter form the American Board of Internal Medicine

Dr Themis Komodromos Achieves American Board of Internal Medicine Certification in INTERVENTIONAL CARDIOLOGY and CARDIOVASCULAR DISEASE

He joins a community of more than 200,000 internists and subspecialists upholding the highest standards in medicine

ARETAEIO HOSPITAL is proud to recognize Dr. THEMIS KOMODROMOS for passing the American Board of Internal Medicine’s (ABIM) certification exam in INTERVENTIONAL CARDIOLOGY and CARDIOVASCULAR DISEASE

Dr Komodromos completed his Cardiovascular Disease Fellowship at University of Illinois at Chicago and his Interventional cardiology Fellowship at Mount Sinai Medical Center/ Miami Heart Institute in Florida.

Since its founding in 1936 to answer a public call to establish more uniform standards for physicians, board certification by ABIM has stood for the highest standard in internal medicine and its 20 subspecialties.

Achieving initial certification means that Interventionalists and Cardiologists have demonstrated – to their peers and to the public – that they have the clinical judgment, skills and attitudes essential for the delivery of excellent patient care. Research suggests that Board Certification is associated with better care.

Innovative minimally invasive bowel procedure in Aretaeio Hospital – Dr. Georgios Markides

Removal of early rectal cancer without external scars by using Transanal Minimally Invasive Surgery (TAMIS)

Recently, a patient with early rectal cancer has been treated with a minimally invasive technique avoiding the potential need for a stoma or more major surgery such as colectomy. The patient underwent the procedure successfully under the care of Dr Georgios Markides and his team using a technique called Transanal Minimally Invasive Surgery (TAMIS). The cancer was entirely removed from the bowel and the defect was sutured closed, with all steps performed inside the bowel without any external scars. The patient was discharged home the next day.

This is probably the first time in Cyprus that such a procedure has taken place, avoiding the requirement for a major bowel resection and its potential complications, with much faster recovery, minimal pain and enabling a complete treatment of the cancer by preserving the rectum.

A first for Aretaeio hospital and Cyprus – Removal of advanced metastatic bowel cancer to the liver entirely by using minimally invasive techniques

For the first time a Cypriot patient with advanced metastatic bowel cancer to the liver has been treated entirely by using minimally invasive techniques. The patient originally underwent a laparoscopic colectomy and removal of the large bowel cancer by Dr Georgios Markides and his team, and returned home only two days following his surgery. A few days later he underwent radiological embolization of half of his liver by the interventional radiologists Dr Nikolas Charalambous and Dr Nektarios Poullos and returned back to his home on the same day. Six weeks later he underwent laparoscopic removal of the biggest part (60-70%) of his liver (laparoscopic extended hepatectomy) by Dr Georgios Markides and his team, with the removal of all the liver metastases, and was discharged home 4 days later.

This is the first time in Cyprus that such a complicated case is treated successfully using entirely minimally invasive procedures through small scars, reducing the risk of post-operative complications, with less pain and faster recovery for the patient while he is near his family.


We are pleased to inform you that ARETAEIO hospital is now offering ESWL services.

The center staffed with the newest kind of mechanical equipment, as well as our specialized medical and nursing staff, is offering comprehensive diagnosis and treatment for patients with urinary lithiasis. The whole process is quick, painless, does not require hospitalization and patients can return immediately to their everyday activities.

The extracorporeal Lithotripter uses shock waves to break the stones without surgery. The success is related to the anatomical structure of each kidney, the size and chemical composition of the blocks. The urologist focuses the shock wave lithotripter at the point of the stone, while the patient is lying down. By the hardness and the position of the stone, which has been identified fluoroscopically using ultrasound, regulates the frequency and energy of the shock wave. The gritty debris resulting from the stone breaking are being eliminated by the smooth urine flow. It is likely, in order for the stone to be shattered to be required more than one and up to three sessions of extracorporeal shock wave lithotripsy.

Health and Prevention Packages

The various economic problems plaguing the citizens of our island and the island itself pushed us to create some competitive packages named “Health and Prevention” which have attractive prices and relate to a series of tests of various specialties. Taking into consideration that prevention is the best cure, ARETAEIO Hospital has advanced the preparation of the following packages, through which each person can purchase according to their needs and requirements:

  • Women check up: This package includes the standard blood test a woman should make. It shows iron, ferritin and THS (thyroid).
  • Men check up: This package includes the main blood test a man should make. It also includes PSA and FREE PSA test which is a test for prostate cancer.
  • Immigration Test: This package includes analysis that is required from immigrants for residence permit and work in Cyprus.
  • Athletes Health Statement: This package is usually requested from CSO by athletes enrolled in associations.
  • Pregnancy Panel: This package includes all necessary analysis for the mother and the embryo at the beginning of her pregnancy.
  • General check up: This package includes all the standard blood test for general examination. It’s recommended to be done annually.
  • General check up B
  • Prostate examination
  • Liver Enzymes
  • Cardio check up 1: An examination prescribed by cardiologists. Clinical examination and cardiogram.
  • Cardio check up 2: An examination prescribed by cardiologists and shows heart function. Clinical examination, cardiogram and stress test.
  • Women check up 1: This package includes mammography and DEXA
  • Women check up 2: This package includes mammography, DEXA and breast ultrasound.  Is usually made once a year for women over 40 (not always – depends on risk).
  • Women check up 3: This package includes mammography, DEXA and chest X-ray usually made for women which smoke (not always – depends on risk). Recommended once a year.
  • Women check up 4: This package is a combination of the above three packages. It includes mammography, DEXA, chest X-ray and breast ultrasound. Is usually made once a year for women over 40 (not always – depends on risk).
  • Women check up 5: This package should be done by all women above 40 (not always – depends on risk).
  • Bone Densitometry Examination: Examination which in mainly aimed at women over 45 years usually after menopause.

Each examination depending on the package takes place at ARETAEIO Hospital by experienced medical and paramedical staff with full high-tech equipment.

Anyone interested to receive the relevant package from Health and Prevention” set can contact Ms. Sophia Theophilou.

Phone Number: 77776900


Clinical Neurosciences Department

The Skull Base team, part of the department of Clinical Neurological Services at Aretaeio Hospital consists not only of doctors within Aretaeio Hospital (Dr Vakis Papanastassiou Neurosurgeon, Dr Eddy Hadjihannas ENT surgeon, Dr Nikiforos Kranidiotis Plastic surgeon, Dr Stelia Kadis Endocrinologist) but also associates and collaborators from both Cyprus (Dr Yiannis Kyprianou Ophthalmic and Orbital Surgeon, Dr Panagiotis Economides Endocrinologist) and abroad (Dr Michael Powell, Neurosurgeon, UK, Dr Christos Georgalas, ENT surgeon specializing in endoscopic skull base approaches, Netherlands).

The skull base is an area where a number of different surgical and medical disciplines (Neurosurgery, ENT, Ophthalmology, Plastic Surgery, Endocrinology) need to co-operate for optimum patient care. It deals with tumours and other conditions affecting the brain, meninges, pituitary gland, paranasal sinuses and orbits.

In the first week of May, the Skull Base Team joined by Dr Michael Powell, Neurosurgeon from UK, with sub-specialization in Cushing’s disease.

Together, the team had carried out operations on patients suffering from Cushing’s disease and acromegaly at Aretaeio Hospital. In addition Dr Michael Powell took time to meet with some of his old patients in Cyprus and delivered a lecture to the MRCA (Medical Royal Colleges Association in Cyprus).

In the third week in May, our associate Dr Christos Giorgallas (Director of the Endoscopic Skull Base Center in Amsterdam) once again returned to Cyprus to work with the team on another series of endoscopic trans-sphenoidal skull base operations.

Outline for Pediatric and Adult congenital heart Disease program

The number of infants born with congenital heart diseases and survive past their post-natal period continues to increase world-wide, making patients with congenital heart diseases one of the fastest growing populations in the field of medicine. In accordance with this trend, the demand for experts in the fields of pediatric and adult congenital heart disease constantly grows. Adult congenital heart disease is now an established, board certified Cardiology sub-specialty in the United States as well as in many countries in Europe and Canada. Caring for infants, children, and adults with congenital heart diseases requires vast knowledge and skills, including deep and thorough understanding of the anatomy, pathophysiology and hemodynamic states of the various cardiac defects, as well as the technical abilities to address them in the catheterization laboratory.

Given these considerations, <strong>the Aretaeio Hospital in collaboration with Cardioheal, an Israeli cardiovascular professional group, </strong>have taken upon establishing a comprehensive program for the evaluation and treatment of pediatric and adult individuals with congenital heart diseases.   Sagi Assa, M.D. and Yonatan Buber, M.D., both experts in the field of congenital heart diseases, were selected to assist in this mission in close collaboration with Aretaeio physicians, Georgios P. Georghiou, M.D (Cardiac Surgeon-Coordinator), Themis Komodromos, M.D (Interventional Cardiologist), and George Kanellopoulos, M.D (Cardiac Surgeon). Currently based in Israel, Drs Assa and Buber underwent extensive training: Dr. Assa was trained at the Deutche Herzzentrum in Berlin in the field of congenital heart disease interventions and is one of the leading Cardiologists at “Save a Child’s Heart”, an international program in which pediatric patients from under-served areas of the world arrive in Israel to receive extensive treatment for their cardiac diseases. Dr. Buber was trained at Boston Children’s Hospital and Nationwide Children’s Hospital in the fields of congenital heart disease and intervention, and served as an instructor at Harvard medical school and the Ohio state medical school. Doctors Assa and Buber currently care for hundreds of patients with a wide spectrum of congenital heart conditions- from simple shunt lesions to complex single ventricle physiologies.

The first two interventional procedures for adults with complex congenital heart diseases were undertaken at the Aretaeio Heart center. These consisted of percutaneous closure of a very large and tortuous patent ductus arteriosus and stent implantation in a native aortic coarctation. The procedures were carried out by Dr. Themis Komodromos, Dr. Georgios P. Georghiou and Dr. George Kanellopoulos with the help and guidance of Dr. Assa and Dr. Buber. Both patients were discharged home on the following day on excellent condition.