The EULAR (European League Against Rheumatism) scientific meeting was held in Rome in June.
I had the opportunity to attend as did around 15000 others.
A big, busy meeting. Usually I share some reflections of what I learned from the meeting but this time, I was a little disappointed.
Let me clarify.
There was lots of data, and lots of great research and content. But there are only so many sessions any person can attend (multiple sessions are held concurrently). At the end of any conference I go to, I like to reflect on what I’ve learned from the sessions I managed to get to, that will then change what I do when I return to my clinic.
I’m not so sure I found the pearls of wisdom, or experienced the lightbulb moments this EULAR congress.
So I decided instead to share with you some amusing aspects of the trade exhibits.
Firstly, it’s much, much larger that anything we typically get in Australia.
I wandered around many stalls, and frequented the ones which provided coffee. Coffee remains a crucial ingredient in surviving conferences, particularly as one battles the midday jet lag.
Here are 3 personal highlights, and none of these were for scientific content:
First at the Pfizer stand. Oculus Rift! I’ve heard about this virtual reality headgear gizmo so I stood in line to test in out. I was flying in space, in a reasonably convincing way. Then, a 1-2 minute virtual reality video on how JAK-inhibitors work. Content so-so but the tech was cool.
Next, the BMS stand. A large touch screen. Choose your colour scheme, choose various graphics, and it all comes together on a poster. A few minutes later the poster is printer, rolled, placed in a tube ready to bring home. I was also emailed a pdf which I now share.
Finally, the Roche stand. Long queue. Stand in front of a green screen, your hand is positioned, whack on a smile and you can then choose a local backdrop. Voila!