The PMP Research Foundation was proud to attend and provide a physician scholarship to the Tenth International Symposium on Regional Cancer Therapies, presented by the UPMC Cancer Center in collaboration with the University of Maryland Marlene and Stewart Greenebaum Cancer Center and the Medical College of Wisconsin Cancer Center.

The symposium was very well attended and touched on many of the issues that affect PMP and appendix cancer patients, and continued many of the themes prevalent during the 9th International Congress on Peritoneal Surface Malignancies in Amsterdam this past fall.

In particular, there were presentations on the quality of life for patients undergoing CRS/HIPEC surgery and many discussions regarding patient selection for this procedure, including the impact of age on the risk of post-operative complications and predictors for stoma creation.

There were presentations on the learning curve for CRS/HIPEC and further discussion on how to best train physicians and establish new centers to provide greater access to patients who can benefit from this procedure, including a presentation demonstrating the success of the Mexican national effort to expand CRS/HIPEC at four centers across the country.

Dr. Sugarbaker gave a presentation on the factors for an optimal HIPEC surgery, including improved surgical technology, maximizing the peritoneal cancer index to its lowest possible threshold by utilizing neoadjuvant chemotherapy to minimize peritoneal spread prior to the surgical event, and avoiding tumor entrapment by minimizing prior surgeries.  He also touched on the use of HIPEC as prophylactic tool to prevent the spread of peritoneal metastases, which was also the topic of the poster presentation presented by PMPRF scholarship recipient Dr. Daniel Tuvin of Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City.

PMPRF was also pleased to attend the meeting of the American Society for Peritoneal Surface Malignancies that took place during the symposium.  Highlights of this meeting included discussion of a consensus statement for HIPEC as an accepted treatment for peritoneal metastises from colorectal cancer, a presentation by Dr. Kiran Turaga of the Medical College of Wisconsin on a potential Peritoneal Carcinomatosis Collaborative Registry, and the presentation of the ASPSM Person of the Year award to Dr. Paul Sugarbaker.

The highlight of the symposium for PMPRF was the presentation of the First Annual Gabriella Graham Patient Advocate Award to PMPRF President, Jerry Lewandowski.  Dr. David Bartlett gave an introduction of the award and a lovely tribute to PMP Pals founder Gabriella Graham.  Dr. Laura Lambert presented the award to Jerry, and Jerry gave a touching acceptance speech paying tribute to Gabriella, PMPRF founder Lisa Luciano, and all of the other people who help to make PMPRF a success.