The Italian Obesity Society (SIO) hosted the third edition of its Obesity School from 26-28 January 2023 at the beautiful Comeliana Foundation, which sits at the base of the leaning tower of Pisa.
The School was attended by 40 Italian early career HCPs interested in obesity management. Participants were selected via a competitive application process. The faculty was composed of members of the SIO National board, and included some external experts. SIO course programme covered all aspects of obesity science, including basic science, pathophysiology, diagnosis, management, psychological aspects and obesity stigma. A key part of the programme was devoted to presentation and discussion of clinical cases prepared by attendees divided in multidisciplinary teams.
Dr Luca Busetto said “As President of SIO, I believe that the Obesity School is indeed the most important of our educational activities, preparing HCPs who will manage obesity in our country in the coming years. For me, participating within this brilliant, interactive atmosphere with debate and discussion, questioning and interaction is like drinking from the “fountain of youth”. We will certainly continue to host the school in the years ahead.”
Early Career Network Member Dr Giulia Maria Pontesilli reflects: “I am honored to have had the opportunity to attend the SIO School in Pisa. It has been an extremely positive experience, which provided me the chance to meet many of the most important obesity experts from all over Italy. To mention just a few – Professor Saverio Cinti presented his key work on the adipose organ, Professor Ferruccio Santini discussed monogenic obesity, Professor Paolo Sbraccia enlightened us about future perspectives on the treatment of obesity and diabetes; Dr. Francesca Battista taught us about the importance of and approaches to physical activity training in obesity; Dr. Fabrizio Muratori explained the the latest news about pharmacotherapy; Dr. Maurizio De Luca presented a very useful lecture about the surgical scene in Italy and abroad, and Professor Luca Busetto, aside from being the perfect host and moderator, taught us about patient care and management after bariatric surgery. Other “hot” topics at the course covered social and psychological aspects of clinical management, which I think are just as important.”
Participants in the school included early career doctors, psychologists and dieticians from all over Italy, specializing in internal medicine, endocrinology, nutrition and working in various settings, from the ward to the clinic.
The course provided the opportunity for delegates to participate in the lectures; we were also stimulated to speak in public and work in small groups in the weeks leading up to the course, as we were entrusted with the task of developing discussion materials for some clinical cases.
This gave us the opportunity to share ideas and study the latest innovations and guidelines on numerous topics related to obesity.
I am interested in collaborating with colleagues in the EASO Early Career Network, as I strongly believe in the creation of a substantial multi-national European network to share knowledge so that we can treat patients with obesity using the most appropriate tools and approaches available, and to share knowledge widely across this constantly evolving field. I met many colleagues at the EASO Summer School in Annecy as well, some of whom I am still in touch with personally and professionally. The environment within our societies is always very stimulating and encouraging in supporting these encounters, not to mention the marvelous setting SIO chose for us: the Leaning Tower of Pisa, one of the architectural jewels of Italy, was just outside the window!”