Report: ISGE 19th ANNUAL CONGRESS
“What a fantastic meeting!”
This is the feedback we have been getting since the end of the recent ISGE/AGES Meeting held in Sydney Australia between the 26 and 29th May 2010.
The theme of the meeting was:
Gynaecological Endoscopy: Has it come of Age?
Certainly from this meeting gynaecological endoscopy has not only come of age but it is maturing nicely. The future looks bright.
The Congress was officially opened by Her Excellency Marie Bashir AV, CVO, Governor of New South Wales. We were then all welcomed by the people of the Sydney region and this was followed by a delightful concert containing indigenous and modern music. This was followed by the plenary lecture presented by our Honorary Chair of the meeting, Professor Peter Maher (Immediate Past President ISGE). Peter as we know has made an enormous contribution to the world of gynaecological endoscopy and it was only fitting that he give the opening ceremony plenary lecture. His contributions to both AGES (Past President) and ISGE (Past President) were acknowledged on the night. A warm welcome was then given to all delegates by our good friend and colleague, the President of the ISGE Professor Stefano Bettocchi and President of AGES Assoc/Professor Alan Lam.
The topics covered during the meeting were varied, stimulating and thought provoking. One of the key features was the amount of discussion time that was made available to the delegates. This stimulated immense discussion and interest at the end of each session. Huge congratulations go out to our programme Co-Chairs, Dr Robert O’Shea (Australia) and Dr Charles Miller (USA) for an outstanding programme and efforts during the congress. Such a programme could not succeed without the support of our international and Australian faculty. The support that was shown to this meeting shows again what strong and vibrant societies both ISGE and AGES are. The faculty consisted of 38 international speakers and 23 Australian speakers. A record number of free communications were received (both oral and post the presentations). The co-ordination of this part of the programme is always a huge effort. This is certainly a huge ‘behind the scenes’ effort and happens at all meetings. We would like to acknowledge the immense work of the co-ordinators of this aspect of the meeting; Assoc/Professor Harry Merkur (NSW), Dr Robert Ford (NSW), (AGES Board Members) with the help of Ms Rhonda Talbot from Conference Connection. Those of you who attended the meeting will know the immense effort that Rhonda made to the successful co-ordination of all our international guests and delegates.
The topics of day one were:
Hysterectomy, hysteroscopy, adhesions and oncology.
At the end of each day the organising committee had committed the last session to be a “controversy of the day”. At the end of the first day (Thursday) the topic was Cosmesis and the gynaecologist. On the Friday (day 2) the topic was ‘The impact of endometriosis on infertility and IVF’. These sessions were full and this is always amazing at the end of a long day of lectures. Each session was followed by an enormous amount of discussion from both the panel and our delegates who attended those sessions.
The plenary lectures on day 1 set the tone for the meeting with outstanding lectures by two huge contributors to the world of gynaecological endoscopy. The first plenary lecture was titled “New technology in hysteroscopy” and was presented by the President of the ISGE, Professor Stefano Bettocchi (Italy). The second plenary lecture was “The role of laparoscopic surgery in non uterine or cervical cancer”. This was presented by Professor Tony McCartney (Australia). Both these men have made immense contributions to the world of endoscopy and honoured us with their outstanding lectures on this day.
That evening AGES hosted the ISGE Board, the International and Australian faculties to a dinner. This dinner was on the waters of Sydney Harbour. Not only were the views spectacular with a great dinner, it was a fantastic night to catch up with colleagues from Australia and overseas.
Friday started with the first of the two breakfast symposiums. This was the brainchild of Dr Robert O’Shea (Australia). This session was titled ‘Breakfast with the Stars”. In this symposium two Congress Faculty members volunteered to host a table each. Each table consisted of the two faculty members and eight delegates. The format for this meeting was a presentation would be made by the two faculty members which would then stimulate discussion and debate. This was certainly very much appreciated by our delegates. This gave them the opportunity to rub shoulders with the elite of the world gynaecological endoscopy community.
This morning started an extremely busy two early mornings for our President of the ISGE, Professor Stefano Bettocchi. Not only was he hosting a table on Friday’s “Breakfast with the Stars” but he was also lecturing at the Breakfast Symposium on ‘Office Hysteroscopy’ held on the Saturday morning. This was certainly a great effort by Stefano. On behalf of AGES we would like to thank him for his immense contribution during this conference.
After the Friday breakfast session the themes of the programme included endometriosis, pelvic floor and prolapse, fibroids and infertility. The plenary lectures on that day reflected the themes mentioned above. Our two plenary lectures on this day were given by two outstanding members of the international Gynaecological Endoscopy community. The first plenary lecture was titled ‘Menstruation, endometriosis and stem cells’. This was given by Professor Ray Garry (UK) who has been a longstanding supporter of AGES and the ISGE. It was a great honour to see Ray back in Australia presenting his huge body of research in the area of endometriosis.
Our second plenary lecture was given by Dr Charles Miller (USA). Charles is the current Vice President of the ISGE and immediate past president of the AAGL. Charles has a longstanding commitment in endoscopic surgery, its application and teaching. Just like the president of the ISGE Charles worked tirelessly before and during the meeting. He was everywhere and like all our international and ISGE colleagues was happy to speak to any delegate. All our international faculty found time for everybody. Both these plenary lectures were outstanding in their content.
We would like to take the opportunity to again thank our four plenary speakers. As I am sure you are no doubt aware there is always a huge amount of effort that goes into preparing there important lectures.
Friday concluded with the Gala Congress Dinner at the Art Gallery of New South Wales. We would like to congratulate our PCO and our Executive Director of AGES, Michel Bender on putting together such a fantastic evening. Michel again has done AGES proud. She and her team produced a great event. As always the organisation was amazing. She and her team worked tirelessly before and throughout the conference. Our deepest gratitude goes out to Michel on behalf of both AGES and the ISGE.
Often on Saturday (the last day of an ISGE/AGES meeting) things start to wind down. This did not seem to be the case with this outstanding meeting. Saturday opened with a panel discussion entitled “Training tomorrow for Obstetrician and Gynaecologist – Time for a change”. This was then followed by two extremely stimulating sessions. The first session was ‘Has laparoscopy led to more or less complications?’ and this was then followed by the very important topic of ‘The management of chronic pain’. These sessions were extremely well attended. As mentioned earlier, it did not seem as though the meeting was winding down at all. The meeting was concluded by the presentation of prizes. These prizes were:-
John Kerin Award for Best Free Communication Sponsored by Covidien AU$500
Aijaz Shaikh (pron. Shake)
Introducing the ‘magnet method’ into gynecological single port surgery Yoshihiro Takaki
Co-Authors Andou M
Best Video Presentation Sponsored by B Braun AU$500
Deep bladder endometriosis-surgical treatment Michal Amir
Co-Authors Tsaltas J, Donnellan S, Chan Y, Tan J
Best Registrar Presentation Sponsored by Johnson & Johnson Medical AU$500
Can we predict posterior compartment deep infiltrative endometriosis (DIE) using sonovaginography in women undergoing laparoscopy for chronic pelvic pain? Tommaso Bignardi
Co-Authors Reid S, Alhamdan D, Reid G, Condous G
Best Poster Presentation Sponsored by Karl Storz Endoscopy AU$500
Robotic-assisted radical trachelectomy Chel Hun Choi
Co-Authors Choi DS, Kim B-G, Bae D-S
Best Free Communication Sponsored by ISGE and AGES AU$500
Lower urinary tract and bowel dysfunction following radical endometriosis resection Ying Hong Li
Co-Authors Krishnan S, De Vries B, Cooper M
Best Video Presentation Sponsored by ISGE and AGES AU$500
A novel technique for opened uterine cavity in deep intramural fibroids: Two step bottom up suturing technique in laparoscopic myomectomy Hisato Oku
Co-Authors Matsumoto T, Saeki A, Hashimoto Y, Kuramori R, Akashi Y, Chien HW, Morishita M, Ikuma K
Best Registrar Presentation Sponsored by ISGE and AGES AU$500
Is Pouch of Douglas (POD) obliteration a marker of bowel endometriosis? Su-Yen Khong
Co-Authors Bignardi T, Lam A, Luscombe G
This was then followed by the closing of the meeting. This was conducted by Professor Stefano Bettocchi and Associate Professor Alan Lam.
We wish to thank all the delegates, the organising committee, the faculty and in particular the Boards of the ISGE and AGES for entrusting this meeting upon us. We would like to thank the PCO team. All the above contributors have made this one of the most successful meetings for both the ISGE and AGES.
ASSOC/PROFESSOR ALAN LAM
President of AGES
Vice President of AGES