CC: Room 206/208
Four teams of hepatology fellows are ready to go head to head in Friday’s Academic Debates starting at 4:30 pm in Room 206/208 in Moscone North/South.
Now in its fourth year, the Academic Debates challenge teams of fellows to debate each other on controversial topics in hepatology.
“I think this session really reminds us that there’s still a big gray area in much of our knowledge, and allows us to talk in a nice way about controversial, timely topics that many physicians across the country and around the world are dealing with,” said Dina Halegoua-De Marzio, MD, co-chair of the event, along with Oren Fix, MD, FAASLD, and Michael D. Leise, MD. “We’re all really interested in education of our trainees, and this allows us to get them involved and debate some of these topics with a little bit of competition as well, which adds to the excitement.”
The first debate pits a team from University of Pittsburgh Medical Center against a team from Albert Einstein Healthcare Network on the question “Biopsy vs. Noninvasive Assessment of NASH.”
“There’s been a lot of controversy on the best way to approach patients with this disease, either with the classic gold standard which has been liver biopsy or with some of the newer technologies that are less invasive,” said Dr. Halegoua-De Marzio, Assistant Professor, Director of the Fatty Liver Center and Transplant Hepatology Fellowship Program Director at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital.
The second debate will tackle the question of whether an elderly patient should have a liver transplant. A Yale team will argue in favor of the transplant, while the University of Colorado team will argue against it.
“Many of our patients are now living to an older age, and there is a lot of controversy at different transplant centers on the age we should stop offering liver transplant. This differs across the nation. So we wanted to really take a look at this issue again in a case-based type of scenario,” said Dr. Halegoua-De Marzio.
Each team will have eight minutes to give its initial argument. Team members will then meet with their mentors to prepare for rebuttal. A panel of judges made up of Kim Brown, MD, FAST, FAASLD; Steve Herrine, MD, FAASLD; Jorge Marrero, MD; Cynthia Levy, MD, FAASLD; and Kym Watt, MD; will ask questions and deliberate. Audience members will also have the opportunity to ask questions and vote for the team who makes the most compelling case. The Liver Cup will be awarded to the team with the most convincing argument.
“I think one of the more exciting parts is that we asked that teams submitting their applications also submit topic ideas, and that’s actually where we chose our topics. We’ve gotten really interesting ideas from the teams, and we’ve helped them format that into the actual debate topic,” said Dr. Halegoua-De Marzio.