Over 500 OINDP specialists attended RDD Europe 2019 in Estoril, Portugal, May 7-10, making the conference the biggest RDD Europe meeting ever, the organizers said.
Carolyn Penot of Aptar Pharma, which co-organizes RDD Europe said, “We’ve had great feedback from all of the attendees about Estoril, that it’s a great place to come for a meeting, and it’s been our most successful RDD Europe to date, with not only the number of attendees, but also with 30% more posters being presented this time than in 2017.”
Penot added, “We planned this conference for two years, so it’s always very rewarding to see how everyone is getting on and how everyone is networking and mixing and mingling and having great conversations about everything going on in the industry. We’ve had excellent speakers on a wide range of great topics of interest, and the workshops were very well attended, some of them were standing room only “
During the scientific program, many of the speakers challenged existing assumptions and practices. In the plenary lecture titled, “Unravelling Triple Therapy in Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease,” Jadwiga (Wisia) Wedzicha, Professor of Respiratory Medicine at the National Heart and Lung Institute of Imperial College London, proposed a reconsideration of which COPD patients should be receiving triple therapy.
Professor Wedzicha noted early on that COPD has changed over the past 30-40 years, so studies conducted in the past may not be relevant today. As member of the science committee for the GOLD guidelines, she noted that the guidelines now recommend triple therapy only for patients with later stage disease but that inhaled corticosteroids (ICS) are widely prescribed for earlier stage patients anyway.
For patients with high eosinophil levels (>300 cells/µL), she pointed out, ICS is likely to be beneficial in reducing exacerbations, which are associated with a significant decline in lung function. And while ICS is tied to a risk of pneumonia, she observed that newer triple therapies include lower levels of ICS, and she isn’t seeing many cases of pneumonia. As a result, she said that she has concluded that, “If a patient has exacerbations, don’t hang around” and delay adding ICS to their therapy.
“To a certain extent,” Wedzicha said, “I think we are going to have to reevaluate everything we do,” suggesting the need to design studies in order to determine whether triple therapy should be used in symptomatic patients with earlier stage disease.