Countdown to the first vitiligo world conference
In 7 days Milan, Italy, will host the very first Vitiligo World Congress. It’s an amazing stride for all of us with vitiligo because one of the most important topics to be discussed is how doctors can improve their treatment towards patients with vitiligo. It would certainly be a welcomed change for doctor’s to show compassion and understanding when we express concerns over the emotional issues that arise because of the white patches on our skin.
Of course I’m also excited to hear about the advancements in vitiligo treatments, even if it may be a while until they are available world-wide; it inspires hope and a sense that vitiligo is, indeed, being taken seriously by the medical and pharmaceutical, communities.
If you’d like to read the full agenda for the Vitiligo World Congress, check out my original post. Here is a tidbit from it:
The FIRST VITILIGO WORLD CONGRESS to be held on September 23-24, 2010 at the San Raffaele Scientific Institute in Milano.
Why at the San Raffaele Scientific Institute? Because, using the words of its Founder and President, Don Luigi Maria Verzé, “the San Raffaele complex focuses exclusively on every aspect of man: a blend of soma, intellect and spirit as far as duration and quality are concerned”, as well as because clinical and basic research are core activities of the Institute.
Why a congress dedicated solely to vitiligo? Because in spite of not being a rare disease, of being classified as a disease by the WHO (World Health Organisation) and of being one of the most psychologically devastating chronic skin diseases, with a major impact on both patients and their families, vitiligo is still today underrated and underestimated. Still today there are dermatologists who minimize the impact of the disease, who trivialize the condition or deceive patients’ expectations, leaving them vulnerable to therapies not proven effective, often found within the depths of Internet.
In view of the fact that these last ten years have witnessed a growing interest for research and an improved understanding of the mechanisms regulating the disease, of its genetic susceptibility and of the role played by autoimmunity, this highly intense conference – the Faculty of which is made up by the most eminent experts in the field – sets itself the goal of becoming an ideal occasion for an innovative and in-depth analysis of vitiligo.
The Congress is going to focus on recent developments in our understanding of the disease, touching on such different research areas as genetics, endocrinology, immunology, photobiology and psychology. Old and new therapeutic approaches for vitiligo are going to be a major issue for debate.
Saturday, September 25, will be dedicated to patients: “Vitiligo, where are we now? Interaction among patients, clinicians and scientists”. Goal of this event is to allow patients to play an active role in the field of research and to provide them with more information on existing therapies.