28 April 2009

Seattle and the Bow Ties

So I have been in Seattle since Saturday afternoon. I am here for the annual meeting of the American Academy of Neurology. I have been a member of the AAN for 15 years and have been to 6 or 7 annual meetings. I have frequently referred to the AAN annual meeting as one of the largest collection of old white guys wearing bow ties, because, well, there are lots of old white guys wearing bow ties here.

I have some random thoughts about this year's meeting:
  • This meeting seems to be much less well-attended than the last few I went to -- less people around, little crowds, no pushing or being pushed.
  • Neurobowl (neurology trivia contest) is still fun.
  • There are a lot fewer freebies from the drug and device companies, which is fine with me.
  • Fewer Europeans seem to be here this year than last year, but that may be a function of the West Coast location.
  • The "free" seminars and lectures are the usual combination of completely obscure ("A Tat-Immune Complex Binds the NMDA Receptor, Preventing Receptor Activation and Excitotoxicity"), unrelated to anything I might ever do or see ("Predictive Value of Brainstem Auditory Evoked Potentials (BAEPs) in Decreasing Post Operative Neurological Deficit During Expanded Endonasal Approach (EEA) to Skull Base Surgeries"), interesting ("The Transition of REM Sleep Behavior Disorder to Neurodegenerative Disease") and something that may seriously affect what I do on a daily basis ("Improving Reliability of Stroke Disability Assessment in Clinical Trials and Clinical Practice: The Focused Assessment for the Modified Rankin Scale").
  • Neurology of Sleep was (unfortunately) well-named. It was really hard to stay awake.
  • I chatted with the former chairman of the Dept of Neurology at my medical school. He was very supportive of me when I was a med student, and I hadn't seen him in years. He didn't remember seeing me at my Boards.
  • It's much more fun to come to these meetings with coworkers.
  • KOLs can be pompous and annoying, but often they have very interesting theories, ideas, projects, and clinical trials.
I have one more seminar this afternoon and the Plenary Session tomorrow morning, and then I will be having lunch with a former coworker tomorrow. Who knows what kind of trouble I can get into between now and noon tomorrow? Then it is off to Vancouver with TheHusband for a couple of days (minus ThePinkThing, who will be hanging at home with her grandmother).

6 comments:

John the Scientist said...

I would totally be interested in:

"A Tat-Immune Complex Binds the NMDA Receptor, Preventing Receptor Activation and Excitotoxicity"

:p

xinef said...

What's a KOL?

Enjoy Vancouver. :)

John the Scientist said...

@xinef: Key Opinion Leader, or as ND once put it "Doctors who think they are God"

"KOLs can be pompous and annoying, but often they have very interesting theories, ideas, projects, and clinical trials."

I'm not to fond of their personality caveats either, but they are tops in their fields for a reason.

Heh. You should hear what they say about you and your coworkers to me. :D

nara-cat said...

Can't wait until next year, when I'll be at either AAN or CNS. I've missed every single conference this year because of my on-service schedule. Not that it stopped the rest of my team from going... including my attending. (But she was accepting an award, so that's okay.) I just wished that they all would have found coverage... anyway. Not bitter or crabby, not at all. Just can't wait for someone else to come back and carry the pager for a bit.

Enjoy Vancouver!

neurondoc said...

Hell, John, they say that shit to us.

N-C -- it would've been great if you were here -- then we could've hooked up.

allrelated said...

I hope the rest of the conference stimulates your neurons...Did you get to see the NeurologyGuru this conference?

Have a great time on holiday with TheHusband (waves to TH)!