Dr. Wong Speaks at Spine 20 Conference
Dr. Wong, as Past President of the North American Spine Society, was an invited guest speaker at the Spine20 Conference, one of the precursor meetings leading up to the G20 Economic Summit of the heads of state of the top 20 world economic powers. The G20 Summit was held in Riyadh, Saudi Arabia in November, 2020, but due to Covid, largely conducted by Zoom.
The G20 Economic Summit is preceded by a number of conferences related to the various themes of each year’s Summit. Public health is a recurring topic of interest at the Summit. The “Aging Spine in an Aging Population” was one of the subthemes for 2020.
Dr. Wong spoke on “The Terrible Triad – Advancing Age, Spinal Stenosis and Spondylolisthesis.” He reviewed the impact of the increasing percentage of seniors in the worldwide population on the higher incidence of spinal stenosis (nerve pinch from bone spurs, herniated discs, etc.) and spondylolisthesis (malalignment/ slippage of one spinal vertebrae on another) from age related degenerative osteoarthritis. He also discussed advances in both non-surgical and surgical treatments and the need to extend and integrate these treatments globally. Identification of an educational gap between traditional open surgery vs. the newer techniques of minimally invasive surgery contributed to a recommendation to the full G20 that post-graduate surgical education should be “harmonized” so that there is more international cooperation on educational courses.