13th International Musculoskeletal Congress draws record number of delegates

The 13th International Musculoskeletal Congress in Chicago, held April 18-21, attracted a record number of participants and the event marked the first time the World Federation of Hemophilia (WFH) hosted a Musculoskeletal Congress in the U.S.A.

The 340 participants included 92 physiotherapists, 80 hematologists and 64 orthopedists. The Congress medical program featured a state of the art session, surgery tips and clips, two keynote plenaries, two crossfire sessions, a comprehensive session on muscle bleeding, and the presentation of 20 free papers and 48 e-posters.

Poor weather conditions made travelling to Chicago very challenging on the first day. Due to flight delays and cancellations, the physiotherapy and the orthopedic sessions were combined into one on the first day. The opening workshop focused on the Global Physiotherapy Initiative and other international physiotherapy projects. The orthopedists followed with a presentation on the Joint Replacement Registry and the WFH Guidelines for the Management of Hemophilia. The day concluded with an open forum, entitled To Rest or Not to Rest.

The second day began with a robust session on state of the art approaches in musculoskeletal treatment and care, featuring eminent speakers, such as Giridhara R. Jayandharan, MD; Maureane Hoffman, MD; and Mindy Simpson, MD. This was followed by two innovative sessions focused on tips and clips for orthopedic surgeons and the musculoskeletal multidisciplinary team.

Day three began with the first keynote plenary addressing the urgent need for research on hemophilia and other inherited bleeding disorders.  David Lillicrap, MD, from the department of pathology and molecular medicine at Queen’s University, in Canada, presented the challenges and opportunities in research, and the unique contribution that research can make in the bleeding disorders community.

The plenary was followed with the first of two crossfire sessions. Paul Monahan, MD; Len Valentino, MD; and Ulrike Reiss, MD; debated the theory and reality of biological therapies. The day concluded with a session on muscle bleeding.

The closing day of the Congress began with a plenary on outcome measures presented by Nancy Young, a professor in the School of Rural and Northern Health at Laurentian University. Her research focuses on the development and testing of outcome measures. Young’s research uses a child-centric measurement approach to better understand patient perspectives. The Congress concluded with an entertaining debate on inhibitor patient endoprosthesis with Michael Heim, MD, and Nicholas Goddard, MD, and an animated debate between Greig Blamey and Nichan Zourikian on the controversial issue of treating with ICE versus no ICE.

The social event dinner, held at Chicago’s famous House of Blues, included a memorable live performance by an authentic blues band.

Held every two years, the next WFH Musculoskeletal Congress will take place in Belfast, Northern Ireland, in 2015.

WFH would like to thank Baxter, Bayer Healthcare, and Novo Nordisk, for sponsoring the WFH Musculoskeletal Congress 2013.