Review of the Gold Coast Meeting

Article Conference CoverageFrom the ISGE congress in Australia on the Gold Coast

Dr. James Carter: Here we are in Australia at the Gold Coast at the annual meeting of the International Society for Gynecologic Endoscopists. Dr. J.J. Sciarra, the President of the International Society is going to discuss today's meeting, this week's events and also the upcoming meeting that we are going to have in Chicago. So, Dr. Sciarra:

Dr. J.J. Sciarra: Thank you Dr. Carter. This is an important meeting for the International Society for Gynecologic Endoscopy, because it is the first meeting that this Society has had in Australia and we are doing it as a joint venture with the Australian Endoscopy Society. It is their annual meeting and it is our annual meeting, so it is an opportunity for these two organizations to work together. The format of this meeting has been absolutely wonderful in that our speakers and the local speakers have been merged together on the program in such a way that it is possible to share ideas and experiences and to have excellent discussion that covers not only things that are going on in Australia, but all over the world. 

Dr. James Carter: What primary topics at this meeting have been on particular note Dr. Sciarra?

Dr. J.J. Sciarra: It is very interesting to look at the program because we have opportunity on this program to see a variety of new things that are happening which are happening within the field of gynecologic endoscopy. In addition to the evolution of a variety of techniques that we've all been working with over the years, there are many new things in the area of endometrial ablation, the use of computers and enhanced video for better imaging and also to discuss some alternative treatments that are not necessarily endoscopic in nature, but merge with some of the endoscopic things that we are doing. For example, embolization of fibroids has been one of the things that has been talked about in two sessions that I think is a very interesting topic for practicing gynecologists. As well as some of the newer techniques that I mentioned earlier for endometrial destruction and endometrial ablation. 

Dr. Carter: There was also a plenary session and an early training session on the new technique that's being discussed for tubal sterilization by hysteroscopic means and I know you've had a particular background and interest in this topics. Some of your very early work was in exploring the area of hysteroscopic applications for tubal surgery. Could you describe this work and discuss that in terms of your view of it in the future.

Dr. Sciarra: It was particularly timely for us to have a luncheon session today on a hysteroscopic technique that is in the stage of Phase II clinical trials at the moment and one of the sites for the clinical trials is here in Australia, in Adelaide, and Professor John Karin (?) from the University of Adelaide, their reproductive unit, has been one of the investigators. So it was possible, using telesurgery to watch him do an actual case and to discuss the technique with the audience. Basically, this is a hysteroscopic technique where a tubal occlusive plug is placed into the isthmus and the proximal ampulla of the tube. The plug then expands to fill the lumen of the tube and the critical part of this device and system, which is different from all previous ones, is that there is a plastic core that allows for tissue in-growth and it's the tissue in-growth that then anchors this plug within the tube. The initial results are quite promising in that there have been no pregnancies in the patients that have thus far been treated and I think the audience was really quite taken with the presentations that were made during this luncheon conference. Of course with all devices of this type that are being introduced into clinical practice, it will require a great deal more in the way of follow up in these patients and a larger number of patients before we can say anything more specific then I have said today. 

Dr. Carter: This is a very exciting avenue for people who have need for this type of treatment and we look forward to further information presented at additional ISGE Congresses. I understand that there are two congresses coming up. One in Budapest in August and one in Chicago, our annual meeting, which will occur next year. Could you describe the venues for those and give the timing and also let the physicians know how they can register and join the ISGE.

Dr. Sciarra: The ISGE is the only true international organization in gynecologic endoscopy and it's been our plan in recent years to have an annual congress, which is a congress that covers a variety of topics and then what we call a regional meeting, which is usually a focused meeting on a specific area of interest. This year the regional meeting will be held in Budapest in Hungary and it will be on the 31st of August and the 1st and 2nd of September. That promises to be a very fine meeting, the first one that we have had in Eastern Europe. The 2001 World Congress of the International Society for Gynecologic Endoscopists will be held in Chicago and this will be the end of March. The 28th, 29th, 30th and 31st of March, 2001 and this will be, perhaps we hope, the largest meeting that our Society has had to date and should be very exciting, not only the North American members of our Society, but for those coming from Europe. Latin America and Asia. It's relatively easy for people to join the International Society for Gynecologic Endoscopists. We have a form and this can be accessed through our website or it can be obtained at any of our meetings or from the office of the Secretary in Holland and these addresses are readily available. 

Dr. Carter: Thank you very much Dr. Sciarra, I appreciate your taking this time to speak with us here in this beautiful place in Australia.

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