At the cutting edge of retinal medicine and surgery

Minimally invasive surgical techniques, new eye-injected drugs and imminent gene therapies are at the forefront of the innovations to be presented at the conference 'Trends in Surgical and Medical Retina'.
Presentation of Trends in Surgical & Medical Retina 2015

On the 29th and 30th of May, IMO will host the third edition of Trends in Surgical and Medical Retina, a leading conference in the field that will bring together as many as 350 experts from all over the world. The conference is coordinated by the medical director of IMO, Dr. Corcóstegui, and will be attended by 23 of the foremost national and international speakers, including Dr. Stanley Chang and Dr. Mark Blumenkranz from the USA, Dr. Claus Eckardt from Germany, Dr. Ehab El Rayes from Egypt and Dr. Anat Loewenstein from Israel.

According to Dr. Corcóstegui, “Since the last edition of Trends in Surgical and Medical Retina, significant advances have been made in the treatment of retinal disease that confirm the evolution of this sub-speciality in recent years”. The aim of the conference, therefore, is to offer updates on the implementation of the most relevant innovations on both a medical and a surgical level.

Intraocular injection therapies and new drugs are increasingly being proposed as alternatives or complements to surgical practises that are increasingly less invasive, while the new technologies both open up the possibilities for micro-incision surgery and improve visualisation by means of screens (instead of the traditional microscope) in order to achieve maximum precision.

During the conference, attendant ophthalmologists will have the opportunity to observe IMO surgeons in action as they perform interventions and apply the latest procedures during a live surgery session. This session will include nine interventions that will be broadcast from IMO operating theatres and which can be monitored in real time from the auditorium, giving those present an opportunity to discuss and debate approaches to complex cases.

As Dr. Corcóstegui pointed out, “Live surgery is always a challenge, but it is one worth facing as it offers us an insight into the particular techniques of each surgeon and allows us to observe details that cannot be seen in edited videos”. By fostering a dynamic connection between the medical staff and those in attendance, the aim of the conference is to pool the various options for treating patients with retinal disease and encourage debate among specialists.

With this in mind, the conference will address cutting-edge techniques that are virtually unknown elsewhere in the world, such as suprachoroidal buckling, which is used to treat complications associated with myopia. This highly complex procedure was developed by the Egyptian doctor Ehab El Rayes and is also recommended in cases of retinal tear.

Other topical subjects to be approached in the Trends in Surgical and Medical Retina conference will include gene therapies for the treatment of diseases such as AMD and retinal chip implants (Argus II Retinal Prosthesis), which induce visual perception using electrical stimulation in individuals who have become blind as a result of retinitis pigmentosa.