I am extremely grateful to be awarded a travel fellowship by the British Hair and Nail Society to attend the 10th World Congress for Hair Research, 2017. This conference was held at the International Conference Centre in Kyoto, Japan on 31st October to 3rd November 2017.
The main theme of the Congress is ‘Visiting Old, Finding New’. This is a Japanese proverb meaning to review the progress of all previous research activities with the aim of gaining new insight for future directions. The 4-day Congress comprised of a day of hair courses for beginners and residents, and 3 days of scientific programme that included keynote lectures, plenary and concurrent sessions, scientific posters, clinical workshops, sponsored seminars and meet the expert sessions.
On my first day of my arrival at the Congress, I was impressed by Congress venue that was filled with beautiful autumn scenery in a large garden. At the opening ceremony, Presidents from each of the Hair Societies from all over the world presented the histories of their Societies and developments. It was interesting to see how medical professions from all over the world come together to exchange knowledge and research findings in hair diseases, with the aim of bringing new and advanced treatments to this field.
The learning course for residents was particularly useful to me as I have learnt about post-finasteride syndrome and management of difficult hair diseases. The topic on post-finasteride syndrome also generated a lot of debate on the use of this treatment for patients. The first day of the Congress ended with a special lecture on ancient Japanese hairstyles from a Japanese author. It was very interesting to see a different perspective on hairstyles presented from a non-medical professional.
I found the plenary sessions on research on stem cells and hair transplantation enlightening. This was my first exposure to in-depth research studies in hair diseases. There were also updated treatments for various hair diseases which were useful to me as a trainee. From this conference, I have also realised that there is a need for further research in hair diseases, as there are still a lot of unanswered questions in this field.
The experience has been amazing and I would definitely encourage trainees who are interested in hair diseases to attend the next World Congress for Hair Research in Barcelona in 2018.
Dr Yi Ning Chiang