IRCON 2018 stresses need for multi-disciplinary approach

January 14, 2019 0 By FM

Interventional Radiologists from across the nation rubbed shoulders with clinicians of various specialties at the IRCON 2018 held at Kochi on 10 November, 2018, commemorating the International Radiology day.
The one-day meet, which was titled “Interventional Radiologists Meet Referring Specialities” and organized by the Interventional Radiologists Association of Kerala, highlighted various advanced treatment options available in the field today and their relevance to specialties such as hepatology, nephrology, urology and gynecology.

“The basic idea of the conference was to encourage other radiologists and to create awareness among other specialties of the pivotal role interventional radiologists play in patient care,” said Dr. Lijesh Kumar, organizing secretary and consultant radiologist at PVS hospital, Kochi.
The conference discussed various treatment techniques, including ablation therapy, embolisation, aortic stenting, balloon-occluded retrograde transvenous obliteration (BRTO) and transjugular intrahepatic portosystemic shunt (TIPS), underscoring their role in helping patients with bleeding, while enhancing their survival chances by providing quality time for a definitive therapy.

“Over 90% of liver cancers are now treated by interventional radiologists where we can go through the arteries and ablate the tumours, thereby improving the condition of the patient by avoiding major surgeries. Mostly, only 20-30% of liver cancers due to cirrhosis are operable, while we can do the therapy even in patients who cannot undergo surgery,” says Dr. Amar Mukund, Associate Professor Institute of Liver and Biliary Sciences, New Delhi.
He also emphasized the prognostic value of techniques like hepatic venous pressure gradient (HVPG), which can be used as the gold standard for patients at risk of liver cirrhosis.

“Techniques like HPVG should be accessible at every hepatology centre in India,” said Dr. G.N. Ramesh, participating in a panel discussion on treating the complication of variceal bleed.

“We are changing, but right now we have so many barriers and are lacking in the number of experts and facilities in interventional radiology in most hospitals,“ says Dr. Philip Augustine, Gastroenterologist, Ernakulam Medical Center.

“With its image-guided interventional procedures, IR has already enabled safe renal transplantation. We need more dedicated experts to train IR and increase public awareness, making it accessible at the medical college level,” said Dr. Gireesh, Warawdekar senior Interventional Radiologist, Lilavati Hospital & Research Centre, Mumbai.

The conference discussed the need for a multidisciplinary board meeting where all the specialties can convene and narrow down the best treatment, providing a tailor-made approach for each patient.

The conference also involved workshops on biopsy and drainage techniques and aortic stenting, and was attended by over 270 participants.