Perspective No. 1, Farokh Jamalyaria, MD, University of Texas at Houston: The 2014 ACR/ARHP Annual Meeting was a great way to catch up to the cutting edge of clinical rheumatology. Although I did present a research poster, the primary draw of the conference, for me, was the wealth of clinical information.
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Explore This IssueFebruary 2015
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Boston, in November, was as cold as I expected it to be. I’ve lived mostly in warm regions of the U.S., so I haven’t accumulated much winter gear, but what I had was more than adequate for the trip.
The ACR Review Course was the first major session for most attendees; it was likely also the most well attended. Highlights of the day-long course included updates on pregnancy management and outcome in systemic lupus, macrophage activation syndrome, interstitial lung disease in rheumatic disease, clinical genomics, management of salivary gland involvement in Sjögren’s syndrome, management of pseudogout, assessment and management of large vessel vasculitis and treatment of rheumatoid arthritis after diagnosis of malignancy.
The following day, the Year in Review session brought everyone up to speed on new treatments for psoriatic arthritis, the use of biosimilars of biologic agents and “repurposing” new drugs for rheumatic diseases.
The Great Debate was as fascinating to watch this year as it was last year. This year, it was on the topic of belimumab for the treatment of systemic lupus erythematosus. The rest of the conference was studded with excellent and lively lectures on rheumatic diseases, from The Butterfly Effect: Lupus Rashes and Their Mimics to Clinical Challenges in Sjögren’s Syndrome: Neurological Complications and Lymphoma Risk and Rheumatology on the Street. It was impossible to attend every lecture in person. Thankfully, attendees have free online access to the lectures for an entire year via SessionSelect (also see some session reports on pages 50–71 in this issue).
Away from the conference, my co-fellows, attendings and our friends and I enjoyed Boston. Some of us took a guided tour along the Freedom Trail, where we were presented with interesting stories about Samuel Adams, John Hancock and other important figures of the American Revolution. Some of us checked out famous local eateries. We divided a slice of Boston cream pie among four of us. We also visited the oldest bar in Boston. A particularly memorable evening involved a departmental dinner near Faneuil Hall followed by karaoke.
Perspective No. 2, Jayanth Doss, MD, Vanderbilt University Program, Nashville, Tenn: The ACR/ARHP Annual Meeting can be an unforgettable and invaluable experience for a rheumatology fellow. The combination of state-of-the-art plenaries, poster sessions and exhibits is an amazing opportunity to learn more about rheumatology. Networking is a critical activity during the meeting. How many other times will there be thousands of other rheumatology fellows and faculty in the same location? Having a few Annual Meetings under my belt certainly affected how I experienced the 2014 meeting in Boston. As a third-year fellow, here are some of my perspectives: