The Cardiometabolic Health Congress (CMHC) Spring 2022 conference commenced yesterday, Friday, April 8, with lively and inspired discussions led by chairs George L. Bakris, MD, and Anne L. Peters, MD. Hosted at the lavish Westin Kierland Resort in Scottsdale, Great Debates in Cardiometabolic Medicine kicked off with challenging patient cases, reviews of relevant literature, and audience Q&As with expert faculty in the fields of diabetes, prediabetes, kidney disease, hypertension, and more.
Registration and Breakfast Symposium
After checking in at the registration desk and receiving their complimentary conference bags, attendees settled in with a warm breakfast of southwestern fare, including breakfast burritos, chicken apple sausage, egg white frittata, hot coffee, and a medley of juices and pastries. George L. Bakris, MD, and Rajiv Agarwal, MD, MS, opened the breakfast symposium as registrants continued to arrive, and attendees enjoyed enlightening discussions while fueling up for a busy day of lectures, networking, and connecting with exhibitors. Drs. Bakris and Agarwal’s candid and inclusive presentation style set the tone for CMHC’s Spring conference, where leadership is approachable and engaging.
Morning sessions: CKD, HF, and hypertension
Dr. Agarwal began the morning session by discussing the success of SGLT-2 inhibitor use in chronic kidney disease (CKD), citing a randomized study of 5700 patients using kidney failure as the primary outcome and secondary outcome of cardiovascular-related death and hospitalization. Of the need to find an effective treatment for CKD, Dr. Agarwal commented that patients know “if they go on dialysis, they will likely never go off it unless they get a new kidney. This drug reduces the risk of going on dialysis by 20%.”
Then, Katherine R. Tuttle, MD, joined the conference virtually to discuss some challenging cases in CKD management. She presented one of her patients, a 75-year old woman whose profile many providers would recognize in their practice. Based on patient profiles, an audience poll was conducted to determine what pillars of therapy should be initiated to optimize outcomes. Dr. Tuttle’s enlightening dissemination of relevant trials in kidney failure in patients with diabetes was a highlight of the morning session.
PME Lunch Symposium
After the morning sessions, attendees mingled with sponsors in the exhibit hall, where they participated in the passport challenge, engaging with each sponsor to earn a stamp on their passport. Once stamped by each sponsor, they submitted their passports for the grand prize drawing that will take place during the Saturday evening cocktail hour, where four lucky winners will be chosen to receive exciting prizes.
Once the exhibit hall hours came to a close, attendees were served an authentic lunch of salad, seasoned rice, southwestern spiced chicken, hand-fried tortilla chips, and an assortment of desserts as they attended the PME Symposium hosted by Merck.
Keynote address and afternoon sessions
Mikhail N. Kosiborod, MD, the distinguished CMHC keynote speaker, took the stage after lunch to discuss the groundbreaking model of cardiometabolic care centers. He explained that patients under the care of primary physicians and various specialists still present as high risk for heart failure. “These patients will end up in the hospital, or worse, if they don’t receive proper interventions by providers who know and understand the importance of cardiometabolic health care,” commented Dr. Kosiborod.
Anne L. Peters, MD, chaired the afternoon session focused on prediabetes and continuous glucose monitoring. She introduced the first lecturer, Leigh Perreault, MD, who educated our provider audience that because prediabetes is not recognized by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration as a “disease state,” no medication is approved for its treatment. Despite this, Dr. Perrault provided stark evidence that prediabetes will almost certainly develop into type 2 diabetes if lifestyle or other interventions are not used to return these patients to normal glucose levels.
After Dr. Perreault concluded her session, Viral Shah, MD, took the stage to present his insights on continuous glucose monitoring technology in diabetes management. Throughout the afternoon, more faculty delivered lectures on important topics in diabetes management, including insights from Athena Philis-Tsimikas, MD, on the future of dual GLP-1 and GIP agonisits, and an update on insulin use by Grazia Aleppo, MD. The day concluded with an engaging panel discussion featuring afternoon faculty members and an audience Q&A.