The XXIII World Congress of the International Association of Parkinson’s Disease and Related Disorders (IAPRD) was held from August 19th to 22th, 2018, in Lyon, France, at the Lyon Convention Centre, a beautiful location designed by the famous Italian architect Renzo Piano. The meeting was endorsed by the EAN.
Many experts, medical professionals, researchers, residents, and students from all over the world, representing more than 68 countries, attended and followed the exciting and extensive educational program proposed by the Scientific Board. The main objective of this special congress was to provide an overview of the phenomenology, pathophysiology, and current diagnostic and therapeutic strategies of various movement disorders. In particular, the entire program was tailored to provide an educational plan directed mainly to the young neurologists, residents and students who were going to attend the event. Indeed, this was the first world educational congress of the IARPD and this year’s motto was “Empowering the Next Generation of Clinicians, Scientists and Health Professionals”.
The opening ceremony was characterized by the Lifetime Achievement Award handed to Prof. Yves Agid, and the two Melvin Yahr Lectures, one by Prof. Ronald Pfeiffer, who spoke about the story of Parkinson’s disease from the mouth to the colon, and the other by Prof. Michael Schwarzschild who spoke about his experience as a Clinician Scientist.
The meeting was planned with plenary sessions followed by three parallel ones to give delegates a choice of topics, without overwhelming them with too many options. Each session has been very interesting in particular for residents and students who were given the opportunity to attend several workshops related to different skills and practical sessions on the following items:
- Clinical examination of patients with movement disorders
- Deep Brain Stimulation surgeries
- Pump technologies
- Botulinum toxin injections
Furthermore, the last congress day was focused on the emerging diagnostic tools and therapies in Parkinson disease and other movement disorders. All the sessions and the faculties speeches were well appreciated by the audience. In particular the so called “Coffee with the Professor” in which young clinicians and scientists had the opportunity to have a coffee while speaking to a renowned faculty member in a relaxed setting. This was absolutely amazing!
The video session of the “Grand Parade of Movement Disorders”, during which faculty and attendees have shown the most interesting presentations of movement disorders from around the world, has been characterized by a dynamic and interactive debate between the faculties and the audience. During the very well attended oral Poster Sessions, it was really interesting to see the collaboration and the interaction of young researchers from all over the world who shared their research discoveries. Around 300 abstracts were presented at the meeting.
During the congress, the participants had also had the possibility to visit Lyon, one of the cradle of the “nouvelle cuisine”, and to taste its famous and unparelled gastronomy.
We, as young trainees, would like to thank all faculties, attendees, exhibitors and media partners for their contribution that has allowed to make the XXIII World Congress on Parkinson’s Disease and Related Disorders a beautiful and an intriguing opportunity for young clinicians and researchers to improve their knowledge in the field of movement disorders.
We really hope to have the same great experience next year in Montreal, Canada, on June 16-19 June, for the XXIV World Congress of the IAPRD, where the topic will be “Beyond Symptomatic Therapy: Quest for Disease Modification”.
by Dr. Francesco Cavallieri, University of Modena, Italy.