The Open day took place as planned on Saturday 8th November 2014. There were 55 delegates which was the maximum which we could accommodate. We apologise to any members who contacted us “late” to find that it was no longer possible to book a place.
The Chair of Trustees, Emma Rush, welcomed everyone and got proceedings under way by summarising the raison d’etre of the Society and the specific aims of the Open Day.The first presentation was given on behalf of our sponsor Avita by Dr Natasha Rennie. It was entitled Recell Update . As a treatment for vitiligo, ReCell technology works through the delivery of unaffected pigment-producing cells harvested from a piece of the patient's own normally-pigmented skin and is administered by spraying the cells onto the affected area. It is not available through the NHS but can be undertaken privately. Dr Rennie explained the procedure and gave an update on the current status of the treatment.
The next session on Curent Research into Psychological Support was presented by Andrew Thompson of Sheffield University who is a Chartered Clinical Psychologist, and Health Psychologist. His main research interests centre on understand-ing psycho-social adaptation to trauma and illness particularly how people adjust to disfiguring conditions. He has been involved in developing and testing self-help interventions aimed at reducing distress associated with a variety of conditions that effect appearance. This work has focused on the application of techniques from a variety of models including CBT, Mindfulness, and Compassion Focused Therapy. Andrew gave a fascinating talk including a description of available techniques for self-help. He then conducted a workshop which invited those present to consider their own strategies for pschological self- management in the context of vitiligo.
Before we broke for lunch Dr Dev Shah requested volunteers for the next stage of the Hi-Lite Trial with hand-held UVB devices.
After lunch there were sessions on nutrition (both in general terms and specifically related to vitiligo), camouflage (from Changing Faces) and the results of the PATCH survey on skin-staining products available for hands. We also found time to fit in a short AGM for the Society.