November 10-15

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ACR Convergence 2023

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Pediatric sessions at ACR Convergence to make global connections


4 minutes

Eyal Muscal, MD, MS
Eyal Muscal, MD, MS

Collaboration is key for this year’s group of pediatric sessions during ACR Convergence 2020.

“I’m excited that we’re going to have the full gamut of our talks that we were going to have even before the meeting went virtual, with a real concerted effort to ensure enhanced connections between North American and international audiences,” said Eyal Muscal, MD, MS Chief of Rheumatology, Texas Children’s Hospital, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, TX.

A host of pediatric sessions will examine common disease states that challenge the clinician and the researcher at the bedside, while other sessions focus on increasing awareness about novel diseases and disorders that other specialties may first evaluate but with the potential ability of rheumatologists to impact care by bringing their immune modulation skills to the bedside.

Novel diseases, especially, require a collaborative, multidisciplinary approach academically, at the bench in terms of research, and inside the hospital taking care of critically ill patients, Dr. Muscal said.

Precision medicine will be a theme of many sessions, as well.

“Some of the diagnostic conundrums and dilemmas that we’ve fought with as rheumatologists for years are slowly being solved and understood. Potentially, the disease burden of many rare disorders may be lessened by targeted therapies,” Dr. Muscal said.

The second annual Pediatric Thieves Market: Show Me Your Best Cases takes place on Sunday, Nov. 8, at 3 p.m. EST and will again give participants a chance to highlight diagnostic and management strategies with other rheumatologists. The annual

Pediatric Rheumatology: The Year in Review & Awards will start at 10 a.m. Friday, Nov. 6, and will review the publications that influenced pediatric rheumatology in basic, translational, and clinical research.

Other sessions highlighted by Dr. Muscal include:

Life-Threatening Complications of Childhood-Onset SLE: Enhancing Diagnosis & Therapy of Thrombotic Microangiopathies & MAS

Friday, Nov. 6 | 3 – 4 p.m.

This session will cover the challenging aspects of pediatric SLE, especially vascular  immune and hematologic issues, specifically problems with bleeding and clotting, and other life-threatening manifestations of SLE. While rare, they can lead to significant morbidity and mortality in children. Well regarded SLE speakers with both clinical and research experience from the U.S. and North America will discuss these manifestations.

Are We Ready for Precision Medicine in Childhood Systemic Vasculitides?

Saturday, Nov. 7 | 10 – 11 a.m.

Scheduled presenters for this session include Seza Ozen, MD, an internationally renowned pediatric rheumatologist from Turkey, who will provide new genetic insights about small vessel vasculitis. Florence Aeschlimann, MD, MPH, who has done extensive research into large vessel vasculitis, will discuss potential biomarkers that may allow for more focused, precise interventions.

Neurologic Manifestations of Autoinflammatory Disorders

Saturday, Nov. 7 | 3 – 4 p.m.

The three speakers will highlight the need for multidisciplinary cooperation and breaking down of silos so rheumatologists can assist pediatric ICU doctors and neurologists at the bedside of critically ill children with novel immune-mediated disorders. Topics include several rare rheumatic diseases that affect the brain and lead to severe neurological consequences. Some of these, while not always cared for by rheumatologists, may need rheumatologic guidance as more is learned innate immune dysregulation in the brain.

What Every Rheumatologist Should Know about COPA Syndrome: A New Genetic Mimic of Rheumatic Disease

Sunday, Nov. 8 | 10 – 11 a.m.

The session brings together adult rheumatologists who are experts in the field and a radiologist to discuss signs and symptoms of this novel multi-system disorder. Only in the last five years, thanks to genetic testing, has this underrecognized autoimmune or possibly immune-dysregulated state become known. It’s an inherited condition, with children and adults having organ dysfunction mostly related to joints, lungs, and kidneys. Initial presentation may mimic juvenile arthritis mostly, but also other autoimmune conditions such as systemic vasculitis and lupus.

JIA Guidelines

Sunday, Nov. 8 | 12 – 1 p.m.

This session provides clinically relevant up to date information on the most recent ACR approved JIA guidelines. Join experts in the field to hear and discuss new developments in disease diagnosis.

Pediatric Rheumatic Diseases Drug Development: Challenges & Opportunities

Monday, Nov. 9, 12 – 1 p.m.

The ACR and FDA present this session to help, in part, enhance a pathway for the career development of junior faculty to interested in clinical trials and drug development. Topics for this session include orphan drugs, drug approval, and understanding side effects and rare adverse events.