Cycling Surgeons Slice Through The City

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07 Sep 2018

Edinburgh Finish Line for UK’s First-Ever Surgical Cycling Symposium Completes

On 07 September 2018 the UK’s oldest surgical Royal College welcomed 15 cycling surgeons and surgeons-in-training, who have completed a gruelling 550 mile trek in seven days as part of the UK’s first-ever ‘Cycling Symposium’ across Britain.

On behalf of the 500+ year-old Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh, the cyclists set off from Southampton to Edinburgh on 1 September on a tough seven-day bicycle trek– in a bid to spread the word on the latest news and advances in the field of surgery, including the importance of patients’ fitness.

On average an unfit person costs the NHS an extra £6,000 when they undergo an operation, due to longer recovery times in hospital and patients with low cardiorespiratory health are five times more likely to die during or just after a surgical procedure. The team, led by Oxford-based Consultant Liver, Pancreatic and General Surgeon and RCSEd Deputy Surgical Director of the Regional Advisory Network, Mr Mike Silva and Academic Surgical Fellow at Oxford University Hospital and Member of the RCSEd’s Trainees’ Committee Miss Katherine Hurst, set off from Southampton, pedalling through Oxford, Birmingham, Sheffield, Middleborough, Newcastle and Carlisle, finishing at The Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh.

Spearheading the cycling effort Mr Mike Silva said:

“Chafing and saddle sores aside, it has been a fantastic experience and the public support and interest in our mission has been overwhelming. Poor physical fitness can lead to costly yet avoidable complications after surgery and there is strong evidence that improving a patient’s functional capacity lends to better surgical outcomes. In October 2014, the RCSEd launched a UK-wide education campaign to get patients exercising adequately prior to their surgery.  A key aspect of the ‘Cycling Symposium’ was to highlight the positive aspects of physical activity like cycling.”


About The Royal College of Surgeons of Edinburgh

RCSEd was first incorporated as the Barber Surgeons of Edinburgh in 1505, and is the oldest surgical corporation in the world with memberships approaching 25,000 professionals in over 100 countries worldwide. The College promotes the highest standards of surgical and dental practice through its interest in education, training and examinations, its liaison with external medical bodies and representation of the modern surgical and dental workforce. It is also home to the UK’s only Faculty of Surgical Trainers, open to all those with an interest in surgical training regardless of College affiliation. Find RCSEd on Twitter and on Facebook

The College is based at Nicolson Street, Edinburgh, EH8 9DW and can be reached on (0)131 527 1600 or In March 2014, a new base opened in Birmingham, catering to the 80% of the College’s UK membership who are based in England and Wales.

For all media enquiries please contact the Communications Team on +447467 485145 or email 


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