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ESSKA History
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ESKA (European Society of Knee Surgery and Arthroscopy) was founded in 1982

A group of knee surgeons and arthroscopists met in Berlin, established a Board, and envisaged a European conference. Prof. Ejnar Eriksson was the driving force, with the support of the Berlin authorities.

1984 A successful conference was held in Berlin. It attracted 800 participants, and the proceedings were published in a book form.

1986 A second conference was organised by Prof. Werner Müller and Prof. Eriksson. It was held in Basel and attended by 1,000 delegates. An ESKA Newsletter was launched. At the congress, it was decided that criteria for knee surgery were needed, which would enable treatment to be objectively assessed. These would create an international standard. A working party was set up together with AOSSM (American Society for Sports Medicine). 

1988 The Amsterdam Conference (1,000 delegates)  considered the working party’s preliminary results.

1990 At Stockholm Conference (1,265 delegates), the IKDC (International Knee Development Committee) Form was introduced. This is now accepted as an international standard for evaluating knee function.

1992 At Palma de Mallorca, Prof. Eriksson organised a world conference on Sports Trauma, attended by national and international societies. ESKA became ESSKA, the European Society of Sports Traumatology, Knee Surgery and Arthroscopy.

1993 ESSKA’s official journal KSSTA (Knee Surgery, Sports Traumatology and Arthroscopy) was launched.

1994 Congress was held in Berlin, in the same conference hall as the foundation.

1995 KSSTA was indexed by the US National Library of Medicine, as well as by Index Medicus and MEDLINE. This was an immediate tribute to the high standard of published material.

1996 Congress was held in Budapest and organised by Prof. Istvan Berkes.

1998 Congress held in Nice (more than 1,300 delegates) and our scientific programme extended with four multi-centric symposia: knee dislocation, chronic ankle instability, osteonecrosis of the femoral condyles following arthroscopic meniscectomy and the patella in TKR.

2000 Congress was in London.

2002 ESSKA’s 10th Congress was in Rome.

2004 11th Congress was in Athens.

2005  A full-time office was created in Luxembourg. This was necessitated by the increasing volume of work.

2006 12th Congress was in Innsbruck.

2008 13th Congress was in Porto. Prof. Jon Karlsson and Prof. René Verdonk succeeded Prof. Eriksson as editors-in-chief of KSSTA.

2010 14th Congress was in Oslo, which saw the highest  attendance ever, at 2,500 delegates. In 2010 in Amsterdam, Prof. Niek van Dijk convened ESSKA’s first strategic meeting, which involved professional consultants from the USA. The result was ESSKA’s Strategic Plan, both short and long-term. ESSKA’s Mission Statement was incorporated and the Fellowship Programme expanded. Three specialised sections were formed, which eventually became EKA (European Knee Associates), AFAS (Ankle and Foot Association) and ESS (European Shoulder Section).

2012 15th Congress was in Geneva, with over 2,000 participants. KSSTA achieved an Impact Factor of 2.2, which assured its primacy in the field. Prof. Karlsson remained the Editor-in-Chief, with Prof. Roland Becker as Associate Editor-in-Chief. A 2nd Strategic Meeting was held in Porto to evaluate the previous two years and confirm the way forward. ESSKA’s progress in these two years exceeded all expectations. It was decided that such a meeting should be held after every congress to ensure ESSKA’s continued expansion and prestige.

2012-2013 ESSKA’s Office was reorganised along professional lines and in keeping with the Strategic Plan. An Executive Manager was appointed and the office was moved to a larger premise to accommodate the increase in staff. In September 2013, ESSKA also launched the ESSKA Foundation under the aegis of the Fondation de Luxembourg.

2014 16th Congress was held in Amsterdam, where the ESSKA Academy was officially launched, as part of ESSKA's 30th Birthday, and the online Journal of Experimental Orthopaedics (JEO) celebrated its one year anniversary. ESSKAR Awards, ESSKA's reward for Service, were given for the first time at a “Oscar-Hollywood” ceremony at the Congress Dinner and Party.

2016 17th Congress was held in Barcelona, with over 4000 participants. ESMA (European Sports Medicine Associates) was launched, as an inter-disciplinary section. The website was redesigned, with new membership software. A Cycle for Science tour, carrying the ESSKA Scepter from Amsterdam to Barcelona, was organised for the first time. It also included an auction at the Dinner and Party with all proceeds going to the ESSKA Foundation.

2018 18th Congress was held in Glasgow with over 3,200 participants and speakers from over 100 countries.  ESSKA Basic Science Committee Chair Laura di Girolamo won an ESSKAR for Most Dedicated Individual of ESSKA, and then her Basic Science Committee won another for the Most Active Committee or Section. The Most Valuable Society ESSKAR went to the Polish Arthroscopic Society (PTA). ESSKA announced the launch of an international registries in orthopaedics on paediatric ACL injuries (PAMI) along with the ESSKA European Allograft Initiative, which bears the goal to grant better access of musculoskeletal allograft tissues to all European citizens. The first ever post-congress e-version only newsletter was published in June.

2019 1st ESSKA Speciality Days was held in Madrid on 8-9 November
ESSKA Speciality Days is a brand-new meeting concept run in exciting new format that brings together the four specialist Sections of ESSKA (AFAS – Ankle and Foot Associates, EKA – European Knee Associates, ESA – European Shoulder Associates and ESMA – European Sports Medicine Associates) and offers a ‘best of both worlds’ scenario. It proposes a distinct scientific programme for each of the four Sections offering the best quality specialised science of our Society with the added bonus that all networking areas are shared. The Industry exhibition is zoned according to specialist fields, yet all in the same hall. We believe that these ingredients create the perfect recipe for both delegates and Industry to experience a highly specialised and top-class scientific meeting yet with the unique opportunity of having access to and interaction with all delegates and companies across the four Sections of ESSKA.

202119th Congress will be held in Milan

2021 2nd ESSKA Specialty Days will take place in Warsaw, Poland on the 3-4 September

2022 20th Congress will be held in Paris.

2024 21st Congress will be held in Prague.

ESSKA's Roll of Honour

1982 The Berlin Founders:
      - Werner Müller, Switzerland, President
      - Lorden Trickey, United Kingdom, Vice-President
      - Ejnar Eriksson, Sweden, Secretary
      - Peter Hertel, Germany, Treasurer
1984 President: Werner Müller, Switzerland
1988 President: Ejnar Eriksson, Sweden
1992 President: G.P. Hermans, The Netherlands
1993 KSSTA launched by Ejnar Eriksson, Sweden
1994 President: Carl Joachim Wirth, Germany
1996 President: René Verdonk, Belgium
1998 President: Gian Carlo Puddu, Italy
2000 President: Pierre Chambat, France
2002 President: Karl Peter Benedetto, Austria
2004 President: Neil P. Thomas, United Kingdom
2006 President: Daniel Fritschy, Switzerland
2008 President: Lars Engebretsen, Norway
2010 President: Niek van Dijk, The Netherlands
2012 President: João Espregueira-Mendes, Portugal
2014 President: Matteo Denti, Italy/Switzerland
2016 President: Romain Seil, Luxembourg
2018 President: David Dejour, France

Pillars of ESSKA

ESSKA pays tribute to outstanding individuals who have contributed largely to the foundation, structure and growth of ESSKA, by identifying them as "Pillars of ESSKA".


ESSKA Executive Office Luxembourg
Centre Médical - FNM
76, rue d'Eich | L-1460 Luxembourg
Phone: +352 4411 7026 | Fax: +352 4411 7678



The ESSKA Foundation supports ESSKA education and both national and international research projects in the field of orthopaedic and sports medicine and surgery.