On 4 February 2020 in The Hague, Netherlands, the Physiotherapists Committee welcomed colleagues from Europe and around the world to the EAHAD Multidisciplinary Pre-Congress Day physiotherapy sessions.
After kicking the day off with a joint session delving into the care of patients with rare bleeding disorders in The Netherlands, chaired by past Physiotherapists Committee member, Piet de Kleijn, and with the participation of EAHAD European Physiotherapists Network Coordinator, Merel Timmer, the dedicated physiotherapists sessions started at 14.00.
The first session opened with a presentation by Lize van Vulpen on “Differentiating between osteoarthritis and haemophilic arthropathy”. This was followed by a presentation by Melanie Bladen on “Establishing a joint injection clinic – perspectives of the physiotherapist”. Dr van Vulpen concluded the session with her second presentation, this time on the “Clinical implications of early detection of haemophilic arthropathy”.
At 15.30, the committee organised for the first time their very own SLAM session, with seven 10-minute Free Paper presentations. Megan Kennedy took the stage first with her “PHYSICAL ACTIVITY AND CARDIOMETABOLIC RISK PROFILES AMONGST IRISH ADULTS WITH SEVERE HAEMOPHILIA: THE IRISH PERSONALISED APPROACH TO THE TREATMENT OF HAEMOPHILIA (IPATH) STUDY” presentation. This was followed by Paul Mclaughlin’s “PROJECT GYM: PROMOTING FITNESS IN HAEMOPHILIA” presentation and David Stephensen’s “DOLPHIN: DEVELOPMENT OF A HAEMOPHILIA PHYSIOTHERAPY INTERVENTION FOR OPTIMUM MUSCULOSKELETAL HEALTH – INTERIM RESULTS OF A RANDOMISED CONTROLLED TRIAL” presentation. Melanie Bladen presented on “IDENTIFYING PERFORMANCE-BASED OUTCOME MEASURES OF PHYSICAL FUNCTION IN PEOPLE WITH HAEMOPHILIA (IPOP)” and Deepti Chugh on “RELIABILITY OF THE ISTEP IN CHILDREN WITH HAEMOPHILIA”. The last two presentations were “499 HEMOPHILIA JOINT HEALTH SCORES (HJHS): PERFORMANCE OF THE HJHS IN DIFFERENT POPULATIONS” by Isolde Kuijlaars and “PREVALENCE OF HAEMARTHROSIS AND CLINICAL IMPACT ON THE MUSCULOSKELETAL SYSTEM IN PEOPLE WITH HAEMOPHILIA IN THE UNITED KINGDOM; EVALUATION OF UKHCDO AND HAEMTRACK PATIENT REPORTED DATA” by Richard Wilkins.
The session was an excellent opportunity to give the stage to experts in the field, highlight their work and showcase important issues around physiotherapy. The EAHAD Physio Network Regional Coordinators in attendance rated the different presentations. The second prize went to David Stephensen and the first prize to Melanie Bladen.
The 2020 sessions closed with three hot topic debates, where the speakers had to defend positions that sometimes contradicted their personal professional opinions. On “Is ultrasound really helpful in clinical consultation or is it a trend?”, Magnus Aspdahl (helpful) squared off against David Stephensen (trend). Evelien Mauser-Bunschoten (YES) and Piet De Kleijn (NO) debated on “Should haemophilia patients attend physiotherapy sessions in their own HTC?”. Finally, on “Manual therapy VS self-rehabilitation; which is better?”, Thuvia Flannery (manual therapy) went head-to-head with Sébastien Lobet (self-rehabilitation). The stakes were high, and the participants went back-and-forth with their arguments. The ultimate winner was the audience who enjoyed a fast-paced session, at the same time entertaining and informative.
We would like to thank the speakers, chairs, and of course the attendees who made another iteration of the Pre-Congress Physio sessions such a huge success. It was shown without a shadow of a doubt that, just like physiotherapy is an essential part of haemophilia and bleeding disorders care, our sessions are an integral part of the EAHAD Congress.