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Emeritus Professor Robert Pho



Emeritus Consultant
Division of Surgical Oncology (Musculoskeletal Surgery), National University Cancer Institute, Singapore (NCIS)
Department of Hand and Reconstructive Microsurgery University Orthopaedics, Hand and Reconstructive Microsurgery Cluster, National University Hospital (NUH)

Emeritus Professor
Yong Loo Lin School of Medicine, National University of Singapore


Emeritus Professor Pho is a Professorial Fellow in the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery at the National University of Singapore and an Emeritus Consultant in the Division of Surgical Oncology (Muscoloskeletal Surgery), NCIS and Department of Hand and Reconstructive Microsurgery University Orthopaedics, Hand and Reconstructive Microsurgery Cluster, NUH. He graduated in 1966 from the University of Sydney and trained in the United Kingdom, Australia and Singapore.

Dr Pho is a council member of the International Society of Reconstructive Microsurgery, sits on both the editorial board of the Journal of Microsurgery and Injury, as well as the editorial advisory board of the Asian-Pacific Journal of Hand Surgery, and is an advisor to World Scientific in Life Sciences. He was the Founder President of the Singapore Society for Surgery of the Hand, and member and past President of the International Society on Limb Salvage and British Orthopaedic Research Society. 

He is a  Member of the American Orthopaedic Association, Honorary Member of the American Society for Surgery of the Hand and Honorary Member of The Japanese Society for Surgery of the Hand.  His research interests include bone biology, reconstructive microsurgery, tissue transplant and musculoskeletal oncology.


Education and Fellowship 

M.B.B.S (Sydney) , F.R.C.S (Edin), M.D.(Sydney)



Specialty Interests

  • Natural history of free vascularised bone graft as against conventional bone graft.
  • Experimental studies of vascularised and non-vascularised nerve graft transplant in rats.
  • Free flap dissection in the forearm, leg and trunk with emphasis on osteocutaneous bone graft.
  • Micro-circulation in periarterial sympathectomy in rats.
  • Micro-circulation in heel flap, plantar fascia, calcaneum and talus, hand and digits.
  • Bone remodelling and bone strength in vascularised bone graft in dogs.
  • Biomechanical assessment of ankle and knee stability following fibula resection.
  • Foetal allograft.
  • Bone remodelling in foetus.
  • Foetal limb transplant.
  • Degloving injury of ankle in motorcycle accidents.
  • Total hip joint replacement in patients with renal transplant.
  • Vascularised bone graft in non-union of fracture scaphoid.
  • Limb preservation in bone tumour resection and reconstruction.
  • Behaviour of free vascularised bone transplant after radiotherapy.
  • Treatment of congenital pseudarthrosis of tibia.
  • Limb preservation in post-traumatic problematic non-union with large bony defect.
  • Microcirculation in skin and bone.
  • Bioengineering concepts in orthopaedic surgery.
  • Development of below elbow, hand and digital prosthesis.

  • Brachial plexus injuries. 



Awards and Honours

Lee Foundation National Health Group Life Time Achievement Award



Professional Membership

  • Honorary Member,  American Society for Surgery of the Hand  (by invitation)
  • Honorary Member, British Orthopaedic Research Society (by invitation)
  • Honorary Member, New South Wales Hand Surgery Association (by invitation)
  • Honorary Member of The Japanese Society for Surgery of the Hand
  • Member of the American Orthopaedic Association
  • Member, S.O.F.C.O.T.
  • Corresponding Honorary Member, Argentina Orthopaedic Association                               
  • Corresponding Honorary Member, American Society for Reconstructive Microsurgery         
  • Honorary Member, British Society for Surgery of the Hand

  • Senior Member, Singapore Orthopaedic Association



Selected Publications

  1.  Runx2, p53, and pRB status as diagnostic parameters for deregulation of osteoblast growth and differentiation in a new pre-chemotherapeutic osteosarcoma cell line (OS1).   Barry P Pereira, Yefang Zhou, Anurag Gupta, David T Leong, Khin Zarchi Aung, Ling Ling, Robert W H Pho, Mario Galindo, Manuel Salto-Tellez, Gary S Stein, Simon M Cool, Andre J van Wijnen, Saminathan S Nathan.  Journal of cellular physiology, Volume 21 , Issue 3 (2009)

  2. Innervation of the face studied using modifications to Sihler’s technique in a primate model.  Shu Jin Lee, Aymeric Lim, Ivor Lim, Thiam Chye Lim, Robert W H Pho.  Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery, Vol 121, Issue 4 (2008).

  3. Palmar pivot flap for resurfacing palmar lateral defects of the fingers.
    Andrew Yam , Yeong-Pin Peng, Robert W H Pho.  The Journal of Hand Surgery, Volume 33, Issue 10 (2008).

  4. Assessment of colour differences in silicone hand and digit prostheses: perceptible and acceptable thresholds for fair and dark skin shades.  Michael E L Leow, Richard K K Ow, Man Hang Lee, Chan Yiong Huak, Robert W H Pho.  Prosthetics and Orthotics International, Volume 30, Issue 1 (2006).

  5. Book on “Microsurgical Technique in Orthopaedics”,  RWH Pho (ed), Published by  Butterworths, U.K. (1988).

  6. Malignant giant-cell tumour of the distal end of the radius treated by free vascularised fibular transplant, Robert W H Pho.  Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery, 877-884. (1981).

  7. Free vascularised fibular graft in the treatment of congenital pseudarthrosis of the tibia,  Robert W H Pho, B Levack, K Satkunanantham and A Patradul. Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery, Vol 67-B, No 1, 64-70. (1985).

  8. Longitudinal growth rate following slow physeal distraction – treproximal tibial growth plate studied in rabbits.  B P Pereira, S P Cavanagh and Robert W H Pho. Acta Orthopaedica Scandinavica, Vol 68, No 3, 262-268. (1997).

  9. The microvasculature of the nail bed, nail matrix and nail fold of a normal human fingertip.  K Hasegawa, B P Pereira and Robert W H Pho.  Journal of Hand Surgery, Vol 26-A, No 2, 283-290. (2001).

  10. Distribution of Primary Nerve Branches and Terminal Nerve Entry Points to the Forearm Muscles.  J Liu, Robert W H Pho, B P Pereira, H K Lau and V P Kumar.  Anatomical Record, 248, 451-463, (1997).



Updated as of 1 October 2014