170 medics attend professional conference
Dubai, April 7, 2013
More than 170 medical professionals from UAE’ s diabetes medical community of interest attended a professional scientific conference jointly hosted by Moorfields Eye Hospital Dubai and Novartis at the JW Marriott Marquis Dubai.
The meeting attracted GPs, endocrinologists and ophthalmologists, from the public and private sectors across the UAE, a statement from the hospital said.
The audience learned more about the vision related complications of diabetes and the latest therapies available, through a series of presentations by leading specialists from Moorfields in Dubai and London, Imperial College London Diabetes Centre in Abu Dhabi, and Mediclinic Welcare Hospital in Dubai. The conference awarded CME (continuing medical education) points to attendees.
The one-day conference programme, led by Dr Jana Sheqem and Dr Edoardo Zinicola, consultant vitreoretinal surgeons and medical retina specialists from Moorfields Eye Hospital Dubai, included sessions on retinal vein occlusion (RVO); treatment options of macular edema in RVO; Glaucoma and vascular disorders; diabetes management; laser and pharmacotherapies in diabetic macular edema; current issues on diabetic macular edema; and diabetic retinopathy screening.
Mohamed Hussein, head of speciality franchise - UAE at Novartis Pharma Services, said: “Diabetes is the one of the main health issues in the UAE, affecting a significant percentage of the UAE population and of these many are at risk of serious health complications such as eye disease.”
“The aim of this unique conference was to brief the whole medical community involved in diabetes on the latest targeted therapies for treating diabetic eye disease for the benefit of patients. We also wanted to bring together the GPs, endocrinologists, and ophthalmologists and encourage them to refer patients with diabetes to professional eye specialists, for screening, diagnosis and treatment.”
Vision related problems are some of the most common and serious complications of diabetes. In fact, regular eye examinations can often provide an indicator of the state of the disease and the blood pressure control of a patient.
Every cell in the eye (and, indeed, the body) is affected by the biochemical changes of diabetes, according to Moorfields experts. Diabetic retinopathy (damage to the retina caused by diabetes which can lead to blindness) is a disease of the blood vessels.
Once retinopathy is present, direct eye treatment may be needed and the type of treatment depends on the problem. Laser photocoagulation, steroid injections and intra-vitreal VEGF blocking agents are the commonly used treatment options. Where the eye disease is advanced, then surgery can help.
Dr Sobha Sivaprasad, consultant Ophthalmologist from Moorfields Eye Hospital London and a conference speaker, said: “Sharing knowledge and expertise is essential to addressing effectively the challenge of diabetes. The UK has one of the most established diabetes screening programmes and we can help to bring this expertise to the UAE.”
“Given the absence of data for the UAE, population wide screening is probably needed here and Moorfields has the experience – as part of the UK’s National Steering Committee – to support this effort. The first steps would be screening and research and Moorfields can help with this.”
Speaking about the event, Dr Clare Roberts, medical director, Moorfields Eye Hospital Dubai, said: “Moorfields Eye Hospital Dubai was pleased to support this important event addressing one of the most serious healthcare challenges in the region.”
“During the one-day conference, we were able to take an in-depth look at the latest therapies in a range of topics covering some of the eye diseases that are particularly prevalent across this region. The speakers included leading experts in their field from London and Dubai, who came together to share their knowledge that will benefit patients across the region.” – TradeArabia News Service