The 4th AOPMC was held in Pattaya, Thailand in November 2014.Contributed by Roongroj Bhidayasiri, MD, FRCP
Associate Professor of Neurology
Chulalongkorn University Hospital
Bangkok, Thailand

February 2015

The 4th Asian and Oceanian Parkinson’s Disease and Movement Disorders Congress (AOPMC) was held in beautiful Pattaya, Thailand, at the Pattaya Exhibition and Conventon Hall (PEACH) from November 28-30, 2014.

With guidance from the MDS-AOS Executive Committee, the AOPMC Oversight Committee, and the AOPMC Scientific Program Committee, the Local Program Committee designed a scintillating program that attracted more than 800 registrants from more than 30 countries in the region. Outstanding assets for the Congress included the world-class faculty, drawn from their international posts as well as from within the region.

The topics of the four Opening Symposia provided a glimpse of the range of topics that were to be covered at this Congress: “Balancing efficacy and adverse events of dopamine agonists in Parkinson’s disease management”; “Complementing clinical examinations in targeting muscles for botulinum toxin injections…”; “Practical tips for managing complications in advanced Parkinson’s disease”; and “A holistic view of Parkinson’s disease.”

Video Tournament ParticipantsThe opening ceremony that followed set the tone for the Congress by reviewing the history of the AOPMC, by the welcome from the Deputy Mayor of Pattaya and by words of support and reminders of our shared mission from the Presidents of the Neurological Society of Thailand, Dr. Somchai Towanabut), the Thai Parkinson’s Disease and Movement Disorders Society, Dr. Roongroj Bhidayasiri), Chair of the MDS-AOS (Dr. Louis Tan) and the President-Elect of MDS (Dr. Oscar Gershanik). Thai dancers, accompanied by traditional instruments, provided the transition to the Welcome Reception.

There were 62 presentations by the faculty in symposia, parallel sessions and plenary sessions on related topics. In line with the purpose of the 4th AOPMC, the Scientific Program focused on specific challenges faced by physicians practicing in the region when dealing with PD and movement disorders and updating the participants on the most current “best practices.” Several presentations specifically focused on the special challenges faced by the Asian and Oceanian region as the medical community responds to the needs of their patients with Parkinson’s disease (PD) and other movement disorders.

Following are some of the regionally focused presentations in Plenary Sessions:

  • “Pharmacological, surgical, and infusional therapies in Parkinson’s disease:  A closer look at the Asian-Oceanian data” by Shen-Yang Lim (Malaysia)
  • “Asian complementary practices in the management of Parkinson’s disease: Applications and evidence” by Beom Jean (South Korea)
  • “The use of neurorestorative technologies in Parkinson’s disease: Asian-Oceanian experiences” by Ryosuke Takahashi (Japan)
  • “Common movement disorders in the Asian-Oceanian Region” by Roongroj Bhidayasiri (Thailand)

The Plenary Sessions also included “Perspectives on Parkinson’s disease: Past accomplishments and future possibilities;” in addition to the sessions noted above.

The Parallel Sessions covered a broad range of topics, including “Effective management of Parkinson’s disease symptoms (motor and non-motor) ”; Physiological studies in movement disorders”; Diagnostic clues from neuroimaging….”; “Defrosting Parkinson’s disease”; “Recognition and management of movement disorders conditions in general medical  disease; and “Chorea in clinical practice”.

AOPMC Faculty DinnerSymposia also covered the following topics: “Optimizing Parkinson’s disease Pharmacotherapy”; and “Maximizing the efficacy of botulinum toxin to restore facial symmetry in blepharospasm and hemifacial spasm.”

There were 250 posters exhibited which demonstrated the broad range of issues being investigated by clinicians in the region. Topics included:

  • Nurses and allied health interventions
  • Ataxia
  • Surgical Therapy for Parkinson’s disease
  • Huntington’s disease: Sleep disorders in Parkinson’s disease: Quality of Life and Caregiver’s Burden in Parkinson’s disease
  • Neuropharmacology in Parkinson’s disease
  • Cognition in Parkinson’s disease
  • Behavioral disorders
  • Secondary Parkinsonisms and Parkinsonism-plus
  • Surgical Therapy for Parkinson’s disease
  • Tremor
  • Several other areas of research

The breadth and quality of research described in the posters indicated a strong interest in advancing the agenda of improving our understanding of PD and movement disorders and treatment practices in the region. Tours of the posters were conducted regularly and awards were given to the authors of the most outstanding research described in the posters.

In addition to an outstanding Scientific Program with presentations by some of the leading experts in their respective fields of specialization, and posters describing the creative research taking place in the Region, the 4th AOPMC was distinguished by:

  • An Opening Ceremony which featured Thai dancers with the “world premier” of their performance and the accompanying music
  • A Video Tournament which tested the diagnostic acumen of the teams and the audience with participants from 8 countries within the AOS region
  • The presentation of the Philip Thompson and the Yoshikuni Mizuno Lectureship Awards and the Junior Award Lectureships and the delivery of the prize-winning speeches
  • The active participation during the Q&A sessions by the registrants, indicating their high level of interest and commitment to the topics being considered

The Asian and Oceanian Section of the International Parkinson and Movement Disorder Society (the Main Organizer) and the Thai Parkinson’s disease and Movement Disorder Society (the Host Organizer) would like to once again thank the outstanding faculty, delegates, exhibitors, and the staff of MDS and local agencies who worked so diligently to plan and to implement a very successful 4th AOPMC.


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