Care at NUH

Our History

2024/06/14

The Department of Hand and Reconstructive Microsurgery traces its roots back to 1974 when Emeritus Professor Robert Pho, alongside Professor P B Chacha, established the first microsurgical section in Southeast Asia, within the University Department of Orthopaedic Surgery .  The team achieved significant milestones in Hand and Reconstructive Microsurgery, including the first thumb replantation in Singapore in 1977, vascularized fibular transfer in 1978, and toe transfer in 1980.

In 1985, the Hand Surgery Unit was officially established at the Singapore General Hospital. When the university staff relocated to the National University Hospital in 1989, Emeritus Professor Robert Pho initiated a hand division within the discipline of Orthopaedic Surgery. On 1 December, 1991, an independent Department of Hand and Reconstructive Microsurgery was formally established. The founding staff included Emeritus Professor Robert Pho as Chief, Professor K Satku and Professor V P Kumar as Consultants, and Mr Kour Anam Kueh as Senior Lecturer and Senior Registrar. 

 

Official opening ceremony of the department (13 Feb 1993)
Official opening ceremony of the department (13 Feb 1993)

The department was helmed by Associate Professor Lim Beng Hai from 2000 to 2004. The first fully certified hand surgeons to be trained at the department were Dr Looi Kok Poh, followed by Professor Aymeric Lim, who assumed the role of department chief in 2005. In 2008, Dr Peng Yeong Pin took over as chief from Professor Aymeric Lim when the latter was appointed NUH's Chairman, Medical Board.  

Under Dr Peng's leadership, the Hand and Reconstructive Microsurgery Centre (HRMC) was established. First in Southeast Asia, the centre was officially opened in April 2011, bringing together staff from the Department of Hand and Reconstructive Microsurgery, Hand Occupational Therapy, and a dedicated team of nursing and administrative staff. The department is currently under the leadership of Dr Mark Edward Puhaindran. 

Our Leaderships
Emeritus Professor Robert Pho 1991 - 1999
Associate Professor Lim Beng Hai 2000 - 2004
Professor Aymeric Lim Yu Tang 2005 - 2007
Dr Peng Yeong Pin 2008 - 2012
Associate Professor Alphonsus Chong khin Sze 2013 - 2021
Dr Mark Edward Puhaindran 2022 till date
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