Transatlantic Partnership: Dr. Thomas F. Kolon and Dr. Josef Oswald

Oct 21, 2021

Initiating and supporting clinical cooperation between the OMI’s academic partners is a main goal of our initiative. We are thrilled to share that this week’s Pediatric Urology seminar course director and co-course director spent two days working together via a visiting professorship in Linz, Austria prior to the seminar start in Salzburg. Dr. Thomas F. Kolon, Associate Chief of the Division of Urology at the Children’s Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP) and a Professor of Urology (Surgery) at the Perelman School of Medicine at the University of Pennsylvania was hosted by co-course director Dr. Josef Oswald, Chief of the Pediatric Urology Department at the Sisters of Mercy Hospital in Linz.

Dr. Kolon stated: “this was a wonderful opportunity to exchange thoughts on medical treatment of pediatric urology patients. We spent time on patient rounds, radiologic and pre-operative review conferences, as well as in the operating room sharing surgical technique. I delivered a lecture on “Nephron-sparing Surgery in Wilms Tumor” and we had a thoughtful discussion on current treatment strategy. We all thoroughly enjoyed furthering our medical knowledge in the hope of optimizing our care of the pediatric urology patient”.

Dr. Oswald explained that on the first day, difficult casuistics in the isotopic review board, congenital diseases of the urinary transport system, and pathological parenchymal changes in malformations of the bladder were discussed. Dr. Kolon and Dr. Oswald also evaluated ureterovesical junction by istotopic studies. Subsequently, they discussed different therapy options for the children who needed operations.


The second day started with a clinical meeting and a presentation about the inpatient children who had been operated on, which was followed by joint rounds to visit these children in the pediatric wards. After a short break, Dr. Kolon and Dr. Oswald worked together to perform a difficult reconstruction of a urogenital malformation of a 14-month-old child. The malformed organs were identified, dissected, and reconstructed. The operation was performed both endoscopically and in an open fashion with the aid of a magnification device. The child was in excellent condition after the operation with no complications, already able to leave the clinic this week with the mother.


Dr. Kolon also gave a lecture on organ-preserving kidney surgery for malignant tumors in children, presenting new 3D diagnostic imaging techniques of the tumor and reconstruction using a 3D printer. With such techniques, it was possible to study the entire vascular tree and perform an exact resection of the affected parenchymal area only.

Dr. Oswald shared that “this was a great enrichment for the whole team, as well as for the affected children. The whole team was impressed by the routine and exact surgical technique of Dr. Kolon. For us, and especially for our younger fellows, the professional exchange with Dr. Kolon was an impressive experience as well as a human and scientific enrichment”.

This year’s seminar in pediatric urology was the third year that Dr. Kolon and Dr. Oswald have collaborated as course and co-course director. We cannot imagine a better way to mark this milestone and teamwork than by serving together in one of their home institutions, providing knowledge, experience, and cultural exchange for many local doctors as well.

The OMI is proud to see such natural connections, friendships, and experiences between colleagues take place as a product of the OMI seminar program!