The SocietyVote now in the 2021 senior leadership electionsLearn more and vote
Interstitial lung disease (ILD) is the umbrella term for more than 300 different conditions associated with widespread inflammation and/or fibrosis of the alveolar walls. Many ILDs are rare and can be difficult to treat, so it is essential that the medical community continues to conduct research in this disease area to improve patient quality of life and treatment outcomes.
The virtual ERS International Congress programme includes a dedicated track with a variety of sessions and activities for health professionals involved in the treatment and management of ILD and for those with research interests in this disease area.
Q: The congress theme is digital health. Why is this area important for ILD specialists?
A: The COVID-19 pandemic has highlighted the need to follow patients with ILD at home, avoiding hospital visits. So, the use of specific tools, such as home spirometry and oxygen saturation, which are able to assess parameters that could indicate disease progression or acute exacerbation should be implemented. The dialogue between care givers and patients should also be part of tele-medicine for ILD patients.
Q: Is there a specific session in this track that should not be missed?
A: Pathogenesis of ILDs and the new therapeutic options linked to pathogenesis at horizon (16:30–18:00 CEST on 7 September).
Q: What do you think will be the popular topics in the ILD field at this year’s Congress, and what will be a particular highlight for you?
A: The ERS guidelines session on the treatment of sarcoidosis – published in European Respiratory Journal and much awaited in the ILD community (12:05–12:45 CEST on 5 September).
Post-COVID ILD – there is a pro-con session which will debate the role of diagnosis and treatment with antifibrotics in post-COVID ILD (11:15–11:55 CEST on 5 September).
Also the symposium, ‘Holistic care in interstitial lung disease: monitoring the patient’s pathway‘, covering health related outcomes, well being of the patients, and new tools (09:30–11:00 CEST on 5 September).
Q: What does congress offer to early career professionals who specialise in ILD?
A: For early career professionals specialising in ILD, this year’s congress offers new and improved ways for networking, which is of course critical for career advancement. There are also improvements on the presentation and discussion of your research, so that you can get insightful feedback.
There are many sessions where international experts will present interesting ILD-related themes, such as the new sarcoidosis guidelines, post-COVID ILD and new biomarkers. The virtual platform allows for easy interaction and placement of questions.