The silver anniversary of the ISICEM

The 25th International Symposium of Intensive Care and Emergency Medicine, to be held at the Congress Centre in Brussels, will see us celebrate our Silver Anniversary, when we will reflect on 25 years of meetings that have encouraged the presentation, discussion, and debate of intensive care medicine, and when we also look forward to what the next 25 years may bring.

Jean-Louis Vincent, Head of the Department of Intensive Care, Erasme Hospital,...
Jean-Louis Vincent, Head of the Department of Intensive Care, Erasme Hospital, Free University of Brussels, Belgium with team

Indeed, given the rapid change of pace in intensive care medicine, we felt that 2030 was too far into the future, so we selected My ICU in 2015 as the title for discussion at the Round Table, held immediately prior to the Symposium. Following this, a summary of the results from what promises to be a fascinating round table will be presented in the opening session of this main Symposium Meeting.

The ISICEM has grown from a humble 200 participants and five speakers back in 1981 to become the largest annual meeting of its kind, now attracting almost 5,000 participants from around the world and including a faculty of some 200 international experts in their field. With various presentation formats, including lectures, pro-con debates, tutorials, workshops, round tables, and meet-the-expert sessions, the meeting provides a state-of-the art review of the latest concepts and technology in the field and present the most recent advances in the diagnosis, monitoring, and management of critically ill patients.

Each year, the program is carefully planned by the Scientific Committee to provide as complete coverage as possible of the latest developments in intensive care medicine and related fields. 

This year’s programme will include (among many other topics):
An update on the continuing search for effective therapies for the patient with severe sepsis including information on currently running and recently completed phase III clinical trials.
The latest opinions and results regarding the ‘best’ mode of ventilation and the ‘optimal’ ventilatory settings for patients with acute respiratory failure.
A presentation of recently developed guidelines for various aspects of intensive care medicine, including haemodynamic support in sepsis, management of acute heart failure, and nutritional regimes.
Important new insights into the pathophysiology and management of acute traumatic brain injury.
The prospects for applying new genetics technology to diagnosis, disease classification, and therapy in the ICU patient.
A presentation of methods of assessing tissue perfusion and oxygenation and visualizing the microcirculation.

This is just a small selection of the many topics that will be covered during the four-day meeting. Intensive care medicine is one of the fastest growing hospital specialties with new and important pathophysiological, diagnostic, technological, and therapeutic advances appearing so often that it is sometimes hard to keep up with the latest ‘best’ practice. The International Symposium of Intensive Care and Emergency Medicine helps this process of continuing education, providing participants with the opportunity for learning and discussion with peers, mentors, and colleagues from ICUs in other countries and continents. Our hope is that each participant will take back to their ICU some new knowledge, or technique, to share and implement at a local level to optimise patient care.

I hope this small introduction will encourage you to join us in Brussels in March for what promises to be a very special Silver Anniversary Symposium.


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