UKPGS Meeting 2020
UKPGS Meeting Report 2020, 24th January 2020
On the 24th January 2020, delegates gathered from across the world in London for the United Kingdom Paediatric Glaucoma Society (UKPGS) annual meeting. This year’s meeting attracted a record number of abstract submissions and over one hundred delegates. Glaucoma specialists attended from many parts of the globe including Saudi Arabia, Lebanon, USA, Singapore, India, Scandanavia, Spain, Mexico and Greece. We enjoyed an informed discussion ranging in topic from the technicalities of surgery, to the health-economics of glaucoma. Recurrent themes included our emerging understanding of phenotype-genotype correlations and the utility of this for predicting outcomes for children, also the evolution of fibre-optic cannulation of Schlemm’s canal and progress around appropriate application of this technique.
Highlights from the research session included presentations regarding the importance of corneal clarity to predict outcomes, rates of Schlemm’s canalisation in the different glaucomas and a prize-winning presentation regarding the prognostic significance of ectropion uveae from Professor Kaushik from Chandigarah. We heard about tube complications and tube failure and their independence from each other and also a consideration of the economic and health consequences for our patients who have longer general anaesthetics and much more besides.
Before lunch we watched six video presentations covering novel tube insertion techniques, rescue surgical strategies in low-resource settings and experience with the Paul glaucoma implant. Peter Ta Chang from Miami gave us an update on the Childhood Glaucoma Research Network (CGRN) activities and presented Miss Maria Papadopoulos with a surprise award in recognition of her monumental efforts to build international consensus in the management of the childhood glaucomas as a founding member of CGRN and also UKPGS, both of which have benefitted enormously from her vision and energetic contributions.
A new feature of this year’s meeting, in response to the large number of abstracts, was a poster presentation session during lunch.
Myopia has a complex relationship with glaucoma; each causing the other. We are facing a global epidemic of myopia whilst concurrently there is progress in the work to reduce the incidence and severity of the condition. The afternoon began with a tour de force of the world scientific literature describing myopia prevention by either pharmacological means (Professor Chris Hammond) or optical means (Dr Nicola Logan), which stimulated many questions.
Grand round presentations followed. Dr Ishan Pandya from New Delhi made his presentation which won the UKPGS travel award. He described OCT imaging findings describing a characteristic hyper-reflective layer across the trabecular meshwork in primary congenital glaucoma.
The Noel Rice lecture in 2020 was rather special. Maria Papadopoulos from Moorfields Eye Hospital gave a wide-reaching lecture covering the span of her career as a world expert and opinion leader in the field. In parallel she described the experience of successive generations of her patients. Her focus ranged from surgical developments to superior visual-outcomes to quality of life improvements. She concluded with a call to arms to further improve the lives and vision of our patients and gave the audience a timely reminder that international cooperation is the key to this monumental endeavour. The audience responded with a standing ovation; a first at UKPGS in this sight-evocative year of 2020.
The meeting concluded with dinner a short walk from the conference centre. The evening was a lovely opportunity to rekindle friendships and exchange stories; clinical and otherwise. Year on year we are seeing the UKPGS benefit from growth in the number and geographical diversity of attendees. The annual meeting is a nidus for experts from the UK and around the world to gather and learn from each other in the difficult but rewarding field of paediatric glaucoma. We look forward to welcoming back our friends and colleagues to London in 2021.