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Rheumatology Conference

RCPE Symposium Edinburgh

Date: Wednesday, 13 September 2017


Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh,
9 Queen Street,


Rheumatology has been through a time of enormous change in the last 15-20 years. Our understanding of the importance of early diagnosis and treatment of early inflammatory arthritis has substantially changed outcomes for many patients. The advent of biological therapies has brought great benefit to patients with most difficult to control disease. However, there are still many challenges in the management of rheumatoid arthritis – it is clear that other factors than disease alone affect outcomes; there is significant physical and psychological comorbidity with long term conditions; comorbidities in RA can present challenges in choosing the right biologic drug for an individual patient; and as the numbers of biologic agents increase this may present an increasing financial burden to an NHS under pressure.

Alongside the great strides that have been made in the management of some rheumatic diseases, others still prove more challenging to manage in the clinic and in primary care – including systemic sclerosis and fibromyalgia. 

This symposium programme has been designed to address some of these more difficult and challenging areas, with an emphasis on prevention of disability. It is hoped that it will be of interest to rheumatologists, but also to primary care colleagues, rheumatology nurses and allied health professionals.

Dr Ruth Richmond
Chair, Organising Committee

Organising Committee
Dr Mohini Gray
Dr Annmarie Horne
Professor Iain McInnes
Dr Duncan Porter
Dr Elizabeth Murphy
Dr Vinod Ravindran

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Wednesday 13 September 2017


Registration and Coffee


Welcome and introductory remarks
by Professor Derek Bell, President, Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh

Session 1 - Rheumatoid arthritis (RA)

Chair: Dr Elizabeth Murphy, Consultant Rheumatologist, NHS Lanarkshire


Prognostic factors of functional disability in rheumatoid arthritis
Dr Caroline Kronisch, Senior Trainee, University of Bern, Switzerland
* the importance of psychosocial factors such as mental health and work disability  *a risk tool to identify these patients for early patient education and decision making


Inflammation and neuropsychiatric symptoms
Professor Jonathan Cavanagh, Professor of Psychiatry,  University of Glasgow
* relationship between inflammation and neuropsychiatric presentations * mechanistic studies * clinical studies


Cardiovascular morbidity in RA
Professor Naveed Sattar, Professor of Metabolic Medicine, University of Glasgow - via videolink
* the changing burden * stratifying risk * whose job is it – rheumatologist or primary care physician?


Coffee / tea

Session 2 - Fibromyalgia

Chair: Dr Ruth Richmond, Consultant Rheumatologist, NHS Borders


Chair: Professor Derek Bell, President, Royal College of Physicians of Edinburgh
Advances in our understanding of the aetiology and treatment of fibromyalgia
Professor Gary Macfarlane, Professor of Epidemiology, University of Aberdeen  


Complex regional pain syndrome
Dr Richard Haigh, Consultant in Rheumatology, Royal Devon and Exeter Hospital



Session 3 - “How I ...” interactive case presentations 

The audience will vote on key management decisions in the patient journey, the evidence to support the decisions will be presented

Chair: Dr Vinod Ravindram, Consultant Rheumatologist, National Hospital, Kozhikode, India


“How I manage difficult scleroderma”
Professor Ariane Herrick, Professor of Rheumatology, University of Manchester
* an evolving case with multi system involvement


“How I use biological drugs in difficult clinical situations”
Professor Kimme Hyrich, Professor of Epidemiology and Honorary Consultant Rheumatologist, University of Manchester
* current and prior malignancy * septic arthritis in a prosthetic joint * interstitial lung disease


Coffee / tea

Session 4 - A look into the future

Chair: Professor Duncan Porter, Honorary Professor of Rheumatology, University of Glasgow


Personalised medicine in rheumatology diseases – present reality, hope for the future or impossible dream?
Professor John Isaacs, Director of the Institute of Cellular Medicine, University of Newcastle
* genomics * biomarkers * antidrug antibodies


Biologic drugs in the age of biosimilars
Dr Alan MacDonald, Consultant Rheumatologist, Aberdeen Royal Infirmary & Chair of Scottish Medicines Consortium
* expansion in biologic drugs * a rational approach to competing cheaper products * changes in eligibility



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Online booking for this event closes on Monday 11 September but places may still be available after that date - please contact the Symposium Co-ordinator for further information.

An early bird discount applies until 15 August 2017.

Registration fees


Early Bird fee
until Tuesday 15 August

from Wednesday 16 August

Standard fee



RCPE Fellow



RCPE Collegiate / Associate / Foundation Member



Nurse / AHP / Pharmacist / Postgraduate student



Retired FRCPE, including lunch



Retired FRCPE, no lunch



Medical student



Long term / other leave – Fellows and Members, please contact the Symposium Co-ordinator as some discretion may be available.

Collegiate and Associate Members of the RCPE in clinical research posts may be eligible for funding - please contact the Symposium Co-ordinator for further information.

Trainees – Scotland Deanery medical specialty trainees can attend any number of eligible symposia for a one-off payment from their study leave budget (block grant scheme).

Further details can be obtained from the Symposium Co-ordinator.

Free places

Unpaid post – Nil, if confirmation of status provided – please contact the Symposium Co-ordinator.

Refugee doctors – free places are available to refugee doctors who are Associate Members of the College. Associate Membership for refugee doctors is available free of charge. Please email g.mcalister@rcpe.ac.uk to join as an Associate Member, and then apply to the Symposium Co-ordinator for your free place.

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Further Info

This event is open to all grades of medical, health care and scientific staff and to students. If you are unsure about eligibility, or the correct fee category, please contact the RCPE member of staff responsible for the event (see Fees page).

All relevant events are approved for Continuing Professional Development (CPD). A certificate of attendance with CPD information will be issued electronically to individual delegates via email. Please note - certificates can only be issued to attendees who have signed against their name on the CPD Register/Delegate List available at each event and completed feedback forms have been received.

Please note that on occasion event programmes may be subject to change due to unforeseen circumstances.

A professional photographer may be in attendance at this event. Photographs may be used by the College in digital and printed publicity material. If you do not wish to be photographed, please let a member of staff know at the registration desk.


As a listed building, the College has restricted disabled access. A wheelchair lift is provided at the rear of the College giving access to the Conference Centre and the main historic rooms, but not all of the smaller rooms used for educational events. For further information and assistance please contact the RCPE Co-ordinator responsible for the event.

An induction loop system is available in the conference centre and Great Hall.

Accommodation and Directions to the College

The College has negotiated special rates with a number of local hotels.

Parking is available on street (metered) or at the Omni Centre car park, 10 minute's walk from the College.

Download pdf map and directions

Bicycle racks are available for cyclists at the door to 8 Queen Street. For access to further bicycle racks, please ask at reception.

Local walking routes

Three short walks can be enjoyed from the College. So if you are visiting us, why not explore the local area. Details can be found at Medal Routes.

Commercial Sponsorship

Many events are supported by commercial companies taking stand space. Health professionals and NHS managers are invited to visit the company stands during the breaks. Companies interested in sponsoring this, or other events listed on the Calendar, should contact the Co-ordinator responsible for the event.

Exhibitors/sponsors play no part in the planning or delivery of the event and the College has developed an Ethical Sponsorship Policy to support organising committees and committee chairs in their negotiations with potential commercial partners for education and other events.

Email: e.strawn@rcpe.ac.uk

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