Focused ultrasound physicians, researchers, and industry experts convene
More than 200 clinicians and scientists from Europe and across the globe gathered in Rome this month for the Focused Ultrasound Therapy - 2nd European Symposium, which was supported by the Foundation.
"The symposium more than met our goals of sharing knowledge and stimulating new ideas," said symposium co-chair Alessandro Napoli, MD, PhD, of Sapienza University of Rome. "The meeting helped to establish and consolidate relations, foster discussion of research approaches, and fuel advances in the field."
British surgeon Gabriel Weston learns about the procedure from Virginia’s Dr. Jeff Elias
BBC Features Parkinsonian Tremor Treatment
Astonishing. Amazing. Wonder.
These are some of the words that British surgeon Gabriel Weston uses to describe focused ultrasound in the first episode of the BBC health innovation television program, "Trust Me I’m a Doctor." The program follows Dr. Jeff Elias and his team at the University of Virginia as they treat the tremor of a Parkinson’s patient in a clinical trial funded by the Foundation. The segment does a wonderful job of sharing the patient’s story and chronicling the transformative effect of the treatment.
We are excited to have the program spread awareness as a range of focused ultrasound clinical trials for neurological disorders are being conducted. Watch the program on our website and share it with your friends and colleagues.
Experts discuss optimizing the use of focused ultrasound for bone metastases
Bone Metastasis Workshop Aims to Accelerate Adoption
Before the European Symposium in Rome, 24 experts from academia, industry, and the Foundation participated in a one-day workshop to discuss opportunities and challenges for laying the groundwork to expand adoption of MR-guided focused ultrasound for treating the pain associated with bone cancer metastases.
The main topics addressed included:
Treatment methods and logistics
Current and future patient selection
Required additional clinical trials
Additional evidence that should be gathered for payer approval
"The fact that patients with breast cancer, prostate cancer, fibroids, brain tumors, and Parkinson’s can be treated with a focused beam of sound waves is nothing less than revolutionary."
- Ellen Block
Ellen H. Block Joins Council
The Foundation is pleased to announce that Ellen H. Block has joined our Council. Members of the Foundation Council serve as goodwill ambassadors, advance our message, and connect us to other people who should hear our story. Ellen is a registered occupational therapist, small business owner, and an active philanthropist from Palm Beach, Florida. She is engaged in a wide range of societal and community-related issues locally, nationally, and globally.
"We all know people suffering from disease and know the emotional, physical, and financial stress that they and their families experience with traditional treatments–the anesthesia, surgery, scars, and lengthy radiation therapy," said Mrs. Block. "Imagine the relief that focused ultrasound can provide. This is why it is important to me to help accelerate the adoption and use of focused ultrasound worldwide, and to support the discovery of new applications for this amazing technology."
Neal F. Kassell, MD presents the Foundation model to Chicago audience
Foundation Council Members Host Event in Chicago
The Focused Ultrasound Foundation Council is comprised of a select group of advisors and advocates who provide counsel, organize cultivation events, and help advance the Foundation’s fundraising and public awareness goals.
In this spirit, two Council members, Diane Heller and Ellen Block, partnered to host an awareness event at the Arts Club of Chicago in early October. An engaged crowd comprised of doctors, researchers, philanthropists, and patients were in attendance to learn about the technology and the Foundation as a model of venture philanthropy. The presentation was followed by a spirited dialogue, indicating the crowd’s heightened interest in focused ultrasound and its potential.
As the Foundation’s first such event in Chicago, we were interested in broadening our scope. "A center of medical research and innovation, Chicago is a city where the Foundation would like to establish more collaborative relationships," explains the Foundation’s Director of Development, Pamela Minetti. "During the reception so graciously hosted by our Council members, many new friends were made. We look forward to building on this promising beginning."
Similar events are planned in Washington, DC, and Charlottesville.
"Our goals are to raise both funding and awareness of its value and to join forces with the FUS Foundation at the European and international level."
- General Secretary Andreas Melzer, MD
European Society Seeking Members
The European Focused Ultrasound Society (EUFUS) was recently created as philanthropic forum to establish research funding, share best practices, and promote cooperation in the field for better patient treatment. The organization held their first formal meeting at the Rome Symposium and elected Alessandro Napoli, MD, PhD, of Sapienza University of Rome as President, and Wladyslaw Gedroyc, MD, of Imperial College London as Co-President and Symposium Chairman 2015.
"We are thrilled that the EUFUS is advancing focused ultrasound research, and we encourage European researchers to apply to them for funding," said Foundation Chairman Neal F. Kassell, MD. EUFUS is recruiting members for an annual donation of 30€, is accepting charitable donations, and is planning a fundraising event in Spring 2014. Additionally, EUFUS will support the informal registry of pregnancy after focused ultrasound, led by Dr. Jaron Rabinovici, Tel Aviv, and EUFUS. More information will be available at www.eufus.org, and you may contact Christine Melzer at .
Foundation’s Patient Survey Demonstrates Impact of Fibroids and Preference for Noninvasive Treatment
The Foundation’s patient advocacy program, Fibroid Relief, has been garnering nationwide media coverage of a newly published survey that found that uterine fibroids cause significant fear and morbidity and can compromise workplace performance. It also found that women prefer treatment options that are not invasive and protect fertility (like focused ultrasound).
"Working with experts like Dr. Elizabeth A. Stewart from the Mayo Clinic, we have documented women’s experience not only for the medical literature, but also to raise awareness in consumer media. Through our new patient communication tool, we are encouraging women to get diagnosed early and to learn about all treatment options, including focused ultrasound, so they select the right individual approach.""
- Justine Atkinson, Executive Director of Fibroid Relief
Two Focused Ultrasound Companies Recognized for Innovation
Fierce Medical’s 2013 Fierce 15 As a true testament to the potential of focused ultrasound to change medicine, TWO out of 15 companies selected by Fierce Medical for their top 15 innovators of the year are focused ultrasound companies: Kona Medical and InSightec. The article states, "InSightec has quietly become Israel's most interesting medical device outfit." About Kona Medical, it said: "unlike anyone else in the space, its device lowers blood pressure without the need for an invasive procedure."
The Top 12 Most Amazing Israeli Medical Advances Given that Israel is first in the world for medical device patents per capita and second in Europe for bio-pharma, ISRAEL21c had a formidable task in choosing the country’s most significant medical contributions. Amid competition from 700 companies, InSightec was chosen as one of 2013’s top 12 most significant recent Israeli contributions to the medical field.
ISTU 2014 will be held April 2-5, 2014 at Caesar’s Palace in Las Vegas, NV. The complete program is available on the meeting’s webpage. The deadline for oral presentations is December 12, 2013, and the deadline for poster presentations is January 13, 2014. New this year -- a whole day of educational courses, both clinical and basic science tracks, with CME credit available.