First Middle East Pain and Inflammation Academy held in Dubai

Dubai, 14th, March, 2010: Over 180 of the most eminent regional pain and chronic inflammatory disorders management specialists attended the first Middle East Pain ‘&’ Inflammation Academy. The two day initiative, held on the 12th and 13th of March, 2010, was organized by Pfizer Africa and Middle East and accredited as a Continuous Medical Education (CME) program by the local Dubai Health Authority (DHA).

The pain and chronic inflammatory disorders management experts – representing medical organizations from the UK, Germany, Canada, UAE and Saudi Arabia – provided workshops, presentations, panel debates and question and answer sessions with senior regional healthcare professionals. The key objective of the Pain ‘&’ Inflammation Academy was to provide a platform to develop strategies aimed at improving the quality of life of pain sufferers.

Among the subjects up for discussion were neuropathic pain (nerve pain), often associated with diabetes, as well as chronic inflammatory disorders such as rheumatoid arthritis and Ankylosing Spondylitis (severe inflammation of the spine and pelvis); and Musculoskeletal pain, such as lower back pain or pain that arises from ankle sprains.

As well as the technical and scientific steps that pain management and inflammation medicine has taken, the academy also looked at the financial and emotional burden of chronic pain and the action needed to enhance quality of life and help family support.

Dr. Ayman Mofti, Arthritis and Rheumatism Specialist, has been at the forefront of diagnosis and non-surgical management of pain associated with rheumatology disorders for twenty years. “I have seen some highly effective changes and advances in that time,” he said. “My area of rheumatism and arthritic pain is one of the most common and chronic forms, and it takes a great deal of effort and resources to ensure that each individual is managed with maximum effect. You will always have certain priority issues and must be able to assess the patient’s comfort as well as their dependents’ needs. Most patients suffering from chronic and acute pain are managed by a multidisciplinary approach. This can involve pharmacotherapy, physiotherapy, psychotherapy, and even surgical procedures.” Dr. Ehab Youseif, Regional Medical Director, Pain and Inflammation, Pfizer, described the event as an excellent way to widen the understanding of both diagnosis and management of pain and chronic inflammatory disorders. “We have had world-class international and regional experts giving the latest updates and breakthroughs in their particular fields. On a geographical and practical level, this is a great platform to reach new audiences with new practices.

Enormous advances have been made in the management of neuropathic pain (nerve pain),” Dr Thomas R T?lle, Head of the Interdisciplinary Pain Clinic and Professor of Neurology Technical University in Munich, Germany, said. “But they are not necessarily conveyed effectively as well through publications or online literature as they are on a personal, face-to-face platform. In this region particularly, diabetes is so prevalent that updates and advances need to be broadcast as soon as possible.” The media were also encouraged to play a part in the academy with a roundtable discussion with the panelists to emphasize the implications of mismanagement of pain and inflammatory disorders.