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Dear friend,

On April 16, the 7th “César Chantar Barrios” International Symposium on Inflammatory Bowel Disease will be held at the Puerta de Hierro Hospital in Majadahonda, Madrid. We hope that you would like to attend this conference so that we can explore, discuss and move forward together in the treatment of this pathology that we are all so fascinated by. As always, we will look at some of the controversies, uncertainties and difficulties that this type of patient raises, doing so from a point of view that will be useful for daily clinical practice. Our aim is for everyone to learn new ideas or points of view that we can apply in our daily work starting the day after the symposium.

We will address outstanding issues such as how to make the most of resources such as TNF inhibitor treatments or intestinal ultrasound, how to select the best therapeutic option for each patient with Crohn's disease or ulcerative colitis, or whether there is room in current clinical practice for de-escalation strategies or conventional immunosuppressants. We will update and translate into real clinical practice concepts such as treatment by targets, monitoring drug levels (both TNF inhibitors and non-TNF inhibitors) and address complex but increasingly common clinical problems, such as those raised by the perioperative setting in patients under any type of biological treatment, or those triggered by agents such as Clostridium Difficcile, human papillomavirus (HPV) or perianal disease beyond TNF inhibitor treatment. We will also try to look at issues such as the dietary and lifestyle recommendations that we may or may not give our patients, and the reality of histological healing or personalised medicine that is so much talked about today.

We plan to present clinical cases and hold debates, and we intend to boost the increasingly active participation of those attending by means of a televoting system that will truly enhance the content of the meeting and make it genuinely useful for everyone. This year we also have the participation of top level national and international speakers and, as in previous years, we hope to have other specialists such as surgeons and rheumatologists among the attendees, but we will also invite patients; we think that this is not only fair and appropriate, it is undoubtedly increasingly unavoidable.

Every year, putting together the programme means greater responsibility and excitement; on this occasion we are particularly satisfied with the result. We hope that we have passed this on to you and we look forward to welcoming you to our hospital on April 16.

Luis Abreu, Maribel Vera, Yago González Lama, Marta Calvo, Virginia Matallana and Irene González Partida.

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