Reported by Dr Shahir Hamid Mohd Akbar

Universiti Kebangsaan Malaysia Medical Centre (UKMMC) played host to this recently concluded, successful conference which was jointly organised by the Department of Anaesthesiology & Intensive Care (UKMMC) and the Malaysian Association for the Study of Pain (MASP).

In keeping with the International Association for the Study of Pain’s (IASP) year long campaign “Global year against acute Pain” this event was an indeed a timely one. It was very encouraging to note the good attendance to both the pre conference workshops held on Friday 30th September and the scientific conference held in the Clinical Auditorium of the Academic block in UKMMC on Saturday 1st October. The event was also a personal highlight for UKMMC as it signified the launching and incorporation of “Pain as the 5th vital sign” in our daily hospital practice.

The two workshops generated a lot of interest and participants could choose to attend between the distinguished Dr Carina Li’s ‘Ultrasound Guided Peripheral Nerve Blocks’ or the eminent Dr Mary Cardosa’s ‘Pain as a 5th Vital Sign’.  The former involved lectures and live demonstrations as well as hands-on scanning of the upper and lower limbs while the latter highlighted the importance of identifying, monitoring and managing patients with acute pain.

The actual scientific conference and healthcare product trade exhibition commenced the following day. The opening ceremony was done in grand style and officiated by the Dean of UKMMC YBhg. Prof. Dato’ Dr. Raymond Azman Ali as well as the Deputy Dean of Clinical Services, PPUKM and consultant anaesthesiologist Professor Dr  Jaafar Mohd Zain.

Following this was a series of lectures which covered a range of topics from paediatric pain management, regional techniques, ultrasonography, placebo response, acute pain management, pharmacotherapy and the acute pain service duly finishing up with two excellent case presentations and discussions. All lectures were delivered by very eminent, well established experts in the field of pain medicine and they included speakers such as Dr Carina Li from The Chinese University of Hong Kong, Dr Mary Cardosa, Professors Choy YC, Felicia Lim,  Marzida Mansor, Ramani Vijayan, Doctors Muhammad Maaya, Nadia Md Nor, Navin Durairatnam and Melvin Kandasamy. The lectures proved to be very valuable learning opportunities for the participants and were very informative.

This year’s event  was a success and it surely has achieved its goals in attempting to update the knowledge and skills of all levels and groups of health care professionals with regards to acute pain management. To conclude the organising committee would like to take this opportunity to thank all the members of the faculty, MASP as well as all the sponsors involved for the hard work and time spent to make this meet as memorable and noteworthy as possible.