Leading-edge continuing medical education for doctors ensures that patients receive the best possible neuro-care
When a person gets sick, particularly with a severe illness such as the neurological diseases that affect the brain, the first thing they look for is a great doctor – someone who is up-to-date on the latest treatments, who is attentive to their symptoms, who understands their medical and family history, and who has the time and knowledge to make them feel confident in the care they will receive.
That is what you find at Pacific Neuroscience Institute and across all its focused Centers of Excellence. This is no coincidence. Each physician is committed to providing the highest level of personalized patient care in a team-oriented and collaborative manner.
“The central tenet of PNI is excellence in patient care using the latest and most innovative therapies. Part of that mission is to provide medical education on recent developments in the neurosciences,” says Daniel F. Kelly, MD, PNI founder and director. “This includes patient education at clinic visits and through support groups, fellowship programs for medical graduates, and continuing medical education (CME) opportunities for physicians and medical personnel.”
Education for medical professionals
The 2017 Pacific Neuroscience Symposium held on September 22-23, 2017 at the Loews Santa Monica Beach Hotel, CA, reached medical professionals throughout Southern California. Physicians, fellows, residents, nurse practitioners and nurses looking to further their knowledge in the neurosciences and neuro-oncology took advantage of this learning opportunity, and they were not disappointed.
Both days were jam-packed with talks from PNI faculty experts covering advanced treatment topics across all the Centers of Excellence. Some highlights included minimally invasive keyhole techniques for brain and pituitary tumor removal, and hormonal management of pituitary patients; radiotherapy advances; multiple aspects of glioblastoma identification guidelines, surgery and neuro-oncological treatments; and advances in stroke, aneurysm and vascular malformation (such as Moyamoya disease) treatment and outcomes. Therapies and neurosurgical practices for the treatment of facial pain (including TMJ disorders and trigeminal neuralgia) and hydrocephalus were discussed; and advances in medications for movement disorders such as Parkinson’s disease (PD) and essential tremor (ET) were also covered in detail. Information was presented about deep brain stimulation (DBS) surgical techniques for use in PD and ET as well as in epilepsy and obsessive-compulsive disorder (OCD).
Guest speakers from specialized neurological centers in Los Angeles delivered insightful talks. Mia Miller, MD, ear surgeon at House Clinic, elucidated methods for hearing preservation and restoration in the treatment of acoustic neuromas. Christopher Duma, MD, FACS, Medical Director Brain Tumor Program at Hoag Memorial Hospital, Newport Beach, described the literal “leading edge” of his radiosurgery treatment methodology and vaccine trials for glioblastoma. S. Kumar Shankhala, MD, Director of Clinical Research and Co-Director of Sarcoma Oncology at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center described how melanoma and lung cancer oncology is changing the primary brain tumor landscape.
Two impressive keynote speakers presented on the advancement of science and treatment for patients with serious neurological conditions.
Neil Martin, MD, Director at Geisinger Neuroscience Institute in Danville, PA, spoke about the role of arterial reconstruction in the management of complex aneurysms. Dr. Martin approached his second presentation from a higher perspective, discussing the future of clinical neuroscience and how chasing perfection can lead to excellence in treatment and patient care. He spoke about his vision of integrated clinical neurosciences and the role of genomics and big data for predictive proactive precision healthcare.
Brent Reynolds, PhD, heads the Neural Stem Cell Lab at the Department of Neurosurgery, University of Florida in Gainesville. His talk called “Building a Better Brain” focused on neural stem cells and their regenerative properties. He described the potential impact on regenerative medicine for neurological disorders based on his lab research which focuses on investigating the role that precursor cells play in normal brain function and in states of injury and disease. His second presentation dealt with an ecological approach to diet-based cancer treatment. His research proposes putting pressures on tumor cells rather than completely eliminating them, thus limiting their growth while keeping them susceptible to treatments without becoming resistant. These strategies include such novel concepts as the modified ketogenic diet to deprive tumor cells of sugar which in turn impacts their ability to proliferate.
Zara Jethani, MS, MBA, is the marketing director for the Pacific Neuroscience Institute. Her background is in graphic design, molecular genetics research and healthcare marketing.