I regret that I have not written to you all for a while but there has been a good reason.
I have been attending the European Society of Emergency Medicine 2008 in Munich, Germany.
The conference was very interesting and I attended updates on areas including STEMI, NSTEMI, Pulmonary Embolism, Exacerbations of COPD in the ED, European Resuscitation Council directed sessions on treating dysrhythmias, etc. It was interesting to hear experts talking in their specialist areas and to hear that they are trying to advance the world of Emergency Medicine.
I attended with several colleagues who presented their posters, 3 in all, which covered aspects concerning the problems with accessing emergency care in Japan (some patients are declined admission to various hospitals), the utilisation of emergency services by the over 95 year old paopulation and the case of a serious MRI complication.
The city of Munich is steeped in beautiful architecture and the food (and beer !) is traditional and delicious. Breakfast consisted of smoked salmon, rollmop herring, various meats, cereals, yohurt and bread. Delicious! Coffee too :-)
One evening meal included visiting the famous Hoffbrau House for sausage, mashed potato and sauerkraut.
The Hoffbrau beer is rich in taste and with these glasses being 1 litre in capacity, they are quite difficult to pick up, let alone drink..... Above, Dr O. is inspecting the beer :-)
Sausages, Creamed potato and sauerkraut. Delicious!
Above was some Apple Strudle with custard and cream -- delicious but full of calories!
Above is a traditional Bavarian band playing in the Hoffbrau House.
It was not all academics and fun. There was also a serious side to my attendance in Munich. I wanted to remember. I wanted to remember the victims of the Dachau Concentration Camp. As a doctor and as a human being I thought it was necessary to pay my respects. I have included various photos from my trip there.
The trip there I took alone. It was a chilling experience and to see first hand the horror of what too place made it all the more real.
This is where many prisoners were kept and tortured during 1933 through to 1945.
Despite the many trees in and around the camp area, there were no birds singing. There was an eerie silence.
Let us hope that man can reflect on the past and let us hope that such events can help teach the human race to prevent further genocide of his brothers and sisters in the future. I pray for the day when all of mankind can live in peace.
Let us remember them and let us never forget.