Latest News & Articles

Professor Mark E. O'Donnell


16th June 2018

Professor Mark O'Donnell - Course Director of Royal College of Surgeons England START course.

The Royal College of Surgeons England have been absolutely fantastic over the last 18 months and am now a Course Director for the next START Course in London on the 16th June 2018. The college have also been very supportive in facilitating new faculty members from Northern Ireland from both surgery - Mr Damian McGrogan and Ms Louise Cousins and Anaesthetics - Dr James Reid and Dr Alix Murphy. Ms Cousins and I have been invited to the RCS START Working Re-development Group meeting in London on the 26th June as well.

Feedback from Northern Ireland trainees attending the course in London has suggested the significant demand for this course here which I hope our Northern Ireland Team can deliver with the RCOS England's support later this year. Thanks again to Michele Poole, Laura DeVries, Morgane Johnson and Brian Makepeace from the college for all your help.

25th May 2018

markodonnellvascularsurgery confirms compliance with new GDPR regulations.

Professor O'Donnell has amended his web page in accordance with new regulations for data protection. He wishes to advise patients that he takes great care to safeguard personal data provided by patients and/or colleagues and processes such data fairly and lawfully in accordance with the Data Protection Act 1998 and further implementation of General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) on the 25th May 2018. does not capture or store any personal information about individuals who access this web site except where you voluntarily choose to provide us with your personal details via email. In these latter cases, the personal information you provide by email correspondence is used exclusively by markodonnellvascularsurgery to provide you with current and future information about vascular care and available clinical services. does not pass any of your personal information to outside organisations and/or individuals except with your express consent. Such occurrences will normally involve processes for arranging a clinical appointment at the Kingsbridge Private Hospital , NorthWest Independent Hospital or The Newry Clinic.

In accordance with General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) implementation on the 25th May 2018, Professor O'Donnell advises patients and colleagues that no personal data will be held, transferred, collected or managed by Mark O'Donnell Vascular Surgery. As a result, the "Book Consultation" drop down menu on the website has been removed.

If you wish to book a private consultation appointment with Professor O'Donnell, please contact the appropriate clinic using the contact details below;

North West Independent Clinic
Phone: 028 7776 3090
Clinic Time: Monday Afternoon / Evening.

Kingsbridge Private Hospital
Phone: 028 9066 7878
Clinic Times: Tuesday Afternoon.

The Newry Clinic
Phone: 028 3025 7708
Clinic Times: Thursday Afternoon / Evening.

Please contact Professor O'Donnell via email for other enquiries -

22nd May 2018

Podiatry Update Session at the Belmont Foot Clinic

Had a fantastic evening with so many experienced podiatrists at the Belmont Foot Clinic. Three hours flew by discussing Molecular Mechanisms of Vascular Disease and Acute Clinical Cases. Thanks again to Laura and her team for the invite at Belmont Foot Clinic.

11th - 12th May 2018

Joint Irish and Northern Ireland Association of Vascular Surgery Annual Meeting - Malahide

Well done Mr Reza Al-Saudi MRCS - Specialty Trainee - First Place - Oral Session and Ms Louise Cousins MRCS - Specialty Trainee - First Place - Poster Session at the recent Joint Irish Society of Vascular Surgery Annual Meeting. A true reflection of their hard work and meticulous preparation.

I was fortunate to be a faculty member for the Vascular Surgery Trauma Masterclass with one of my expert colleagues Ms Emily Boyle, Consultant Vascular Surgeon from Tallaght Hospital, Dublin. We provided updates on vascular shunt insertion and lower limb fasciotomy for compartment syndrome.

A huge thanks to Maureen McFarland for meeting logistics, David Wilson for AV expertise and also David Inglis from LeMaitre for the provision of lower limb models and operative kit for our skill station.

27th - 28th April 2018

All Ireland Podiatry Conference 2018

My first invite to this National Conference for our Podiatry Specialists from both Health Service and Private Practice backgrounds. This was very insightful for me as a Vascular Surgeon in the Northern Ireland Regional Vascular Surgery Centre where I was able to hear and discuss community challenges associated with high risk patients particularly those with diabetes. I really enjoyed the informal atmosphere of the society dinner where conversations continued.

Thanks to Alan McCague - Chair SCPNI, Cheryl O'Neill - Chair SCPI and also to David McKeown for the invite and for taking such good care of me at the conference.

18th - 21st March 2018

Attendance at the Society for Clinical Vascular Surgery Annual Meeting

An excellent four days in Las Vegas targeting clinical and technical education for both endovascular and surgical innovation combined with novel research sessions and an opportunity to catch up with old friends and colleagues.

Our SCVS Presidential Address raised the question regarding Vascular Surgical Branding and Patient Awareness and how we as Vascular Surgeons can assess and treat their vascular conditions. I believe this has to be a major focus for our patients in Northern Ireland - "If they see who were are, know who we are, understand what we can do, they may come to see us even earlier" - Mark O'Donnell March 2018.

6th December 2017

Delighted to attend my first meeting as a new member of the Ulster Medical Journal Editorial Board.

Thanks to Dr John Purvis, Ms Mary Crickard and Ms Kathy Clarke for making me feel so welcome.

28th November 2017

Practising Privileges granted at The Newry Clinic

Thanks Caroline for all your assistance in commencing a new Vascular and Endovascular Surgery Service at The Newry Clinic delivering high quality care to patients from throughout the Newry and Mourne region as well as the Republic of Ireland.

First clinics starting in January 2018.

22nd August 2017

Release of the National Vascular Registry Surgeon Outcome Data for 2016

All vascular surgeons within Great Britain and Northern Ireland submit individual patient outcomes to the National Vascular Registry.

The Royal Victoria Hospital at the Belfast Health and Social Care Trust remains one of the highest volume surgical centres in Great Britain and Ireland for all types of vascular surgery.

Professor O’Donnell continues to provide safe outcomes for abdominal aortic aneurysm and carotid endarterectomy procedures.

15th August 2017

Practising Privileges granted at the Kingsbridge Hospital – Part of the 3fivetwo Group

Thanks to Emma, Sharon and Reuben for all their help over the last few months.

First clinics starting in September 2017.

15th August 2017

Practising Privileges granted at the North West Independent Hospital.

Thanks to Finola, Jenny, Ann and Zola for all their help over the last few months.

First clinics starting in September 2017.

11th August 2017

Commencement of the Northern Ireland Vascular Training Teaching Program

Vascular Surgery became its own specialty in 2013 and as a result of significant work by the Vascular Society, Royal Colleges and Commissioning Groups, an approved curriculum has been published to facilitate the training requirements of our future vascular workforce.

Vascular Surgery Curriculum Approved October 2012
Vascular Surgery UK Workforce Reports

The Northern Ireland Vascular Centre at the Belfast Trust has re-commenced the Vascular Surgery Trainee Teaching Program encompassing didactic theory, operative technique, critical reading and Fellowship Examination sessions at 7am every Wednesday in the Royal Victoria Hospital.

Please see this year’s timetable.

10th March 2017

Last day at the Royal Blackburn Hospital – A lot has happened in the last 20 months

A huge thanks to the whole vascular team.

In particular, a huge gratitude to Mr Rob Salaman who gave me an opportunity at the Royal Blackburn Hospital. He was extremely supportive of the Vascular Specialist Role with remit for clinical duties on both the vascular surgery and interventional radiology on-call rotas and Sister Sue Kenny who has been an insurmountable presence for my patients’ and indeed my own well-being – YNWA – A True Red and Friend.

I will miss our excellent nursing and interventional radiology team members. I always relished the challenge of a difficult case and subsequent meticulous case planning discussions with Dr Neil Wilde and Dr Peter Woodhead. Our patients’ could not have benefitted more on Friday’s.    

And of course …Saira and Kelly …Well Words cannot describe how much I will miss your presence. I had a lot of fun! And I will never forget how well you looked after our patients and how highly they thought of you. You always went above and beyond whether it was the provision of an out-of hours interpreting service for worried patients or logistical arrangement of patient care after an abundance of emails from my iPhone at Liverpool Airport on a Friday night. Thanks for looking after me too.

8th March 2017

Final presentation at ELHT

Final presentation at ELHT delivering the new Carotid Endarterectomy pathway to all members of the vascular, stroke and radiology teams following review of our outcome data.

8th February 2017

Under pressure: One hospital's struggle to find free beds.

The BBC's Ed Thomas reports from the Royal Blackburn Hospital - where staff struggle daily to find available patient beds. The hospital was built to serve a population of 300,000 - but is now seeing more than 500,000 people.

During this important report, Professor Mark O’Donnell describes the significance of diabetic foot ulceration and the need for limb salvage.

Under pressure, one hospitals struggle to find free beds
BBC video

15th December 2016

Visiting Professor Confirmation from Ulster University

I would like to thank Professor Gareth Davison for all his help over the last ten years and more. I am very excited to what future collaborations can yield.

This one was for my parents Carmel and Malachy though ................

1st September 2016

Appointed ELHT Vascular Clinical Effectiveness Lead

Appointed Clinical Effectiveness Lead with a remit for audit, morbidity and mortality review and clinical pathway development.

15th June 2016

Received an award for Excellence in Examination at the European Board of Vascular Surgery  

Awarded Excellence in Examination Results Award by the Northern Ireland Medical and Dental Training Agency.

5th May 2016

“A Day in the Life of ….Mark O’Donnell”

I was honoured to have featured on page 5 in “Our Trust – Your News – March 2016” –– “A Day in the Life of ….. Mark O’Donnell”.

5th May 2016

“Trust Vascular Centre Open for Business”.

Our ELHT Vascular Centre is now officially open for business as featured on Page 6 in “Our Trust – Your News – March 2016”.

9th February 2016

Vascular Investigation Patient Information Videos

Feedback from our “Message in a Minute” Video Series suggested that a patient-centred video series actually showing how we investigate certain vascular disease processes could have a major beneficial effect for our patients. After discussion with Estelle and the Elm Media Team, we were able to produce a number of short patient-centred information videos. Thanks again to Elm Media. (Videos presented below with permission from the East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust).

31st January 2016

ELHT Star Award Nomination for Vascular Surgery Team

Vascular Surgery Team nominated for the East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust Clinical Team of the Year.

1st January 2016

“Message in a Minute” – Final Versions Ready

After editing, final versions of the “Message in a Minute” are ready. A video premier is eagerly awaited at our weekly vascular multi-disciplinary meeting. Thanks again to Estelle for her patience with all editing logistics -

Vascular Surgery – Why choose CALVES (Cumbria and Lancashire Vascular and Endovascular Specialist Centre)

Diagnosis and Management of Abdominal Aortic Aneurysms by Mr Rob Salaman – Vascular Clinical Director and Consultant Vascular and Endovascular Surgeon

Understanding walking limitations due to blood vessel disease by Mr Mark O’Donnell – Consultant Vascular and Endovascular Surgeon  

Surgical Treatment of Stroke by Mr Asad Rahi – Consultant Vascular Surgeon

Treatment of Varicose Veins by Mr Simon Hardy – Consultant Vascular Surgeon

Vascular Access in patients with renal failure by Mr Haytham Al-Khaffaf – Consultant Vascular Surgeon

15th December 2015

First use of the Aptus EndoAnchor for Endovascular Aneurysm Stent Salvage in East Lancashire

Proud to be involved as a member of the Vascular Team for the first use of the Aptus (now Medtronic) Endoanchor system in a patient with a challenging type 1A endoleak post-EVAR – mentioned in the Medical Directors Newsletter.

18th November 2015

Bringing vascular care to the community - Opening of our Longridge Clinic featured on the Lancashire Evening Post.

The East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust has developed consultant-led patient-centred specialist care in a local environment. All aspects of vascular assessment and care will be provided including vascular duplex investigation combined with the full remit of specialist nursing and wound management care.

5th November 2015

ELHT “Message in a Minute” Filming Day

A “Fun but Scary Day” for all the Vascular Team at the Royal Blackburn Hospital, East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust making our new videos for the ELHT Trust website.

Mr Mark O’Donnell even got a quick make-over before appearing on film.

A huge thank you to all members of the vascular multi-disciplinary team for their participation.

The day of filming could not have gone as smoothly without the professionalism and expertise of;

Estelle Matthews and her team from Elm Media -
Ms Clare Boyd – our fantastic project manager
Ms Natalie Brockie – our senior manager in the surgical directorate.
Mr Rob Watson – Clinical Director and Consultant General Surgeon.      

October 2015

Diabetic LASR Service Commences

Commencement of the Diabetic Limbs at Serious Risk (LASR) service at the East Lancashire Hospitals NHS Trust with an extensive expert team including Dr Malcolm Littley, Consultant Endocrinologist and Mr Jim Barrie, Consultant Orthopaedic Surgeon who both have an interest in Diabetic Foot Disease; our senior podiatry team including Ms Gill Lomax, Carl Kenright and Peter Reston; Sister Sue Kenny, Nurse Specialist and Lead Nurse for Vascular Lab; and Dr Ruth White, Consultant Microbiologist.

Our initial clinical experience was presented later at the STAMP Training Event in the Community, Chorley on the 26th April 2016.

7th March 2015

First Place Award - European Board of Vascular Surgery Examination

Traveled to Maastricht, Netherlands for the European Board of Vascular Surgery Examination. I thought this was an excellent test of vascular knowledge and skills.

The first part required the completion of vascular surgery and endovascular case logs prior to acceptance for the clinical and technical part of the exam.

The examination itself was quite a test of stamina as it lasted all day and was split into numerous parts encompassing an academic viva, mulitple clinical vivas, vascular surgery technical skill examinations and endovascular procedures on the simulator.

I was delighted to pass and even more pleased to receive Honours. I must admit to an early night rather than major celebrating - was simply exhausted and wanted to attend the European Vascular Course on the following few days.

Winter 1994

Mark O'Donnell Alpine Ski Racer

In a previous life …………… Ski Racing in Serre Chevalier


I would like to say a personal thanks to a number of very important people who have been instrumental in their support and assistance over the last number of years and also to those highly skilled individuals for their expert assistance with the creation of this website.

My mum Carmel and dad Malachy for their unwavering, unconditional support and for always listening to my ideas.

Rob Salaman from the Department of Vascular and Endovascular Surgery at the Royal Blackburn Hospital for all his help during my first few years as a Vascular and Endovascular Consultant and for permission to use the “Message in a Minute” videos.

Lanara and Natasha from Toolkit Websites Ltd for their arduous efforts and due diligence in creation of this website – I would highly recommend their expertise and patience – .

Russell P Bentley for his expert advice and assistance with the creation of the MOD Vascular Surgery Logo –

Gerard, Aine and Jill from Ulster University for facilitating the creation of video lectures for my academic practice.

Una and Ann for their assistance with web photography for the Patient Journey section.

Disclaimer – Mark O’Donnell Vascular Surgery

This website is intended to act as an information resource for vascular surgery patients and does not replace clinical care provided by their vascular specialist. This website also includes information resources for healthcare professionals working in vascular and endovascular surgery.

Mark O’Donnell Vascular Surgery accepts no responsibility for the accuracy or reliability of the material emanating from this site or from articles linked to from this site. The presence of a link does not imply agreement with the information contained within, nor is it a measure of substantiation. Harm arising from clinical decisions based on these articles is a matter between clinician and publisher.

This website is free to use and remains a personal project and is in no way associated with my employer.

Use of this site is acceptance of this disclaimer.

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Clinical Practice

Royal Victoria Hospital
Grosvenor Road
Belfast BT12 6BA
Phone: 02890 635936

Kingsbridge Private Hospital
811-815 Lisburn Road,
Belfast BT9 7GX
Phone: 028 9066 7878

NorthWest Independent Hospital
Church Hill House, Main Street
Ballykelly BT49 9HS
Phone: 028 7776 3090

The Newry Clinic
Windsor Avenue
Newry BT34 1EG
Phone: 028 3025 7708

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