Inflamma­tory Brain Disorders Conference 2023

Post-Conference Comments from Attendees

Comments about the 2023 conference from clinician attendees

The Inflammatory Brain Disorders Conference 2023 was (again) the most educational and effective conference I have ever attended in my 43 years as a physician! International experts presented 16 lectures over the course of two days, delivering major gems every hour to facilitate the diagnosis and treatment of tough psychiatric and neurologic neuroinflammatory conditions. A cumulative tsunami paradigm shift for psychiatry is in the works; inflammatory brain disorders will be the rule, rather than the exception. My accolades to all the panel of experts who shared their latest research and efforts. Thank you!

Martin T. Jensen, MD
Adult, Adolescent, & Child Psychiatry, Laguna Niguel, CA

Wonderful conference! First time I attended this conference. Neuroinflammatory diseases are not a large part of my practice as a pediatric rheumatologist – at least I thought so before the conference. Given the expanding scope of diseases related to neuroinflammation, my preconceived notions have been challenged – in a good way! Each presentation was given by an obvious thought leader and the results presented were all cutting edge. Cannot wait until next year.

Daniel Lovell, MD, MPH
Pediatric Rheumatologist, Cincinnati, OH

Rigorous, wide-ranging, two-day conference by international faculty providing cutting edge genetic and clinical insights furthering the rapidly increasing knowledge about auto-immune mediated syndromes. Crisp presentations, excellent slides, and clinical movie clips combined with meticulous attention to the duration of the presentations. Information was presented on the autoimmune manifestations of Long Covid-19, PANS, PANDAS, postural orthostatic tachycardia syndrome (POTS), psychoses, seizure disorders and tick-borne illnesses alongside presentations on the Gut Microbiome and porosity of the blood brain barrier. Commercial-free. Well worth the tuition. My first Inflammatory Brain Disorders Conference. Planning on next year.

John Esterhai, MD
Orthopedic Surgeon, Spring House, PA

When I go to a conference, I feel that I have gotten my money’s worth if at least 10% of what I learn is new. In this course, the new information was at least 60% and what I did know was expanded significantly. This has increased my understanding and sensitivity to the possibility of an immune disorder in patients I have seen over the years. There are several patients in my current practice who will be re-evaluated for the possibility of something I did not know to look for before.

Lee Solomon, MD
Psychiatry, Chattanooga, TN

This is a fantastic conference. I love the virtual format and access, and the wealth of research and information is tremendous. It’s interesting and exciting to hear what’s going on at the cutting edge of research and think about the implications of that on practical treatment and outcomes.

S.M. Thompson, MD
Pathologist, Westlake, OH

I have attended the conference for 3 years because I need to know what’s happening in this field. Keeping up on what we know and what we don’t know – but are learning more about – is critical in my work as a child psychiatrist. I have encountered several patients with significant neuroinflammatory concerns that were initially treated as primarily psychiatric – and I credit this conference for my evolving skill set in this area.

I highly recommend this conference to my psychiatry and neurology colleagues.

Candida Fink, MD
Board Certified Child, Adolescent, and General Psychiatry
Rochelle, NY

As a pediatrician and mother of two children with PANDAS, I am so happy that the neuroimmune conference exists to further physician education in advancements made in the field of neuroinflammatory disorders. As our understanding of these conditions continues to evolve, it is SO important that primary care physicians are aware of these disorders and feel confident in at least considering the diagnosis and initiating management/referral when patients present with an acute change in behavior. I believe the conference provides solid scientific evidence to support this growing field and highly recommend that ALL physicians involved in ANY type of patient care attend the conference to increase their understanding of the important role that inflammation and the immune system plays in behavior and other psychiatric symptom development.

Kortney West, MD
Pediatrician, Wyomissing, PA

You are the best. Every year I am amazed at the range and quality of speakers!

Angela Tang, MD
Internal Medicine, Torrance, CA

Thank you for this excellent conference. I have attended for several years and have gained more understanding of neuropsychiatric conditions each year.

Destiny Gmelch, MD
Pediatrician, Springfield, OR

I truly loved this conference; the presenters, their research, their ability to answer our questions, and their passion for healing. This conference was by far one of the best conferences I have ever attended. The presenters were, for the most part, the actual researchers who not only comprehended their topics extremely well, but who passionately apply their knowledgeable results in clinical settings to improve the lives of people who struggle emotionally and physically. This is what medicine is supposed to do–to figure out what the underlying issues are and to try to reverse the pathology that is causing the problems in those who have been seriously affected. I feel so frustrated that currently many are still having to take treatments that we know do not work, or we are made to wait and wait to utilize therapies proven to help many.

Sharon A. Collins, MD
Pediatrician, Cedar Rapids, IA

Fascinating conference — frontier of medicine. I imagine one day many “psychiatric disorders” will be recognized as stemming from significant immune dysregulation.

Kimberly Fullerton Nelson, MD
Family Medicine, Eureka, CA

As a pediatrician, I feel I am more prepared to recognize these conditions and refer to appropriate specialists. The conference gave me a much better understanding of inflammatory brain conditions.

Wayne Narucki, MD
Pediatrician, Rutherford, NJ

Thank you so much for another amazing conference! The research and presentations were cutting edge and fascinating. I always appreciate Dr. Frankovich’s presentations, and I especially found the presentation on gut microbiome, gut brain axis and neuroinflammation to be interesting and encouraging. What an amazing opportunity for researchers and clinicians to connect and share their research on inflammatory brain disorders!

Lisa Drummond, BSN, RN, MSN
Pediatrics, Madison, WI

Amazing information on latest neuroimmune research. Exciting research helping explain underlying etiology of some psychiatric symptoms/clinical presentations. This research is so needed to better serve patients.

Carina Quezada Adan, MD
Pediatrician, Santa Rosa, CA

WOW! A fantastic conference with incredibly smart professionals! Very heavy on basic science and research, which makes me feel much more confident as I approach these issues in the clinic. Thanks for putting this together. It was very informative and very impressive.

Charles Sprague, MD
Pediatrician, Omaha, NE

The conference was well organized, the speakers were leaders in the field, and the topics discussed were relevant to my practice as a psychiatrist who needs to be informed about neuroimmune factors in diagnosing and treating patients who present with a variety of mental status changes and psychiatric symptoms.

Mary T. Mandell, M.D., D.F.A.P.A.
Psychiatrist, Southern Pines, NC

This conference was such a helpful combination of both current research and clinically relevant information. Thanks for organizing!

Donna Kirchoff, MD, FAAP
Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics, Portland, OR

Whether a child has PANDAS and PANS are frequent questions I get from parents of children I see with new onset psychiatric disorders. This conference helped me to learn about this topic and feel comfortable and knowledgeable in my explanation of whether this diagnosis should or should not be considered.

Adare Yanagihara, MD
Psychiatry, Cary, NC

Thank you for providing the venue to collaborate and for your work in trying to improve the resources for North Carolina neuroimmune patients.

Danielle Rose, MD
Pediatrician, Mooresville, NC

This conference really equipped me to be aware of when I should be considering these conditions and feel confident in advocating for these patients and have confidence in proposing and initiating various diagnostic and treatment options. Thank you so much for allowing me to be a part of this event!

Alexandra Winship PA-C
Emergency Medicine/Urgent Care, Chesapeake, VA

Thank you so much for organizing the conference and making it available to so many who are eager to learn.

Yujuan Zhang, MD
Pediatric Rheumatologist, Boston, MA

This information allows me to better diagnose symptom origins and differentials that need to be included. Can now speak to the science behind the why, and possible treatments could now also be discussed.

Suzanne Wilson, MD
Internal Medicine, Pinehurst, NC

Great topics. Very interesting lectures. Thank you for organizing this.

Ekaterina Kostioukhina, MD
Internal Medicine, Oakland Park, FL

I have been more interested in these groups of disorders in the last few years. I now have a much better idea of including them in a differential diagnosis. I feel like I can better evaluate these patients. I can also consider more treatment options.

Jeff Hopkins, MD
Pediatric Specialist – Eating Disorders, Atlanta, GA

As a licensed clinical psychologist, I have found the Neuroimmune Foundation’s Inflammatory Brain Disorders conferences extremely helpful in recognizing and identifying which patients need referrals to medical providers to rule out inflammatory brain disorders. This year’s conference increased my awareness of autoimmune psychosis and pediatric acute-onset neuropsychiatric syndrome, as well as how other autoimmune or inflammatory conditions can masquerade as psychiatric problems. Unfortunately, in today’s age, mental health providers are on the front lines treating these conditions. Yet we are trained almost exclusively within a behavioral paradigm or skills-deficit model of understanding mental illness, especially in regard to the treatment of children and adolescents. Because of the knowledge I have gained from the Neuroimmune Foundation’s webinars and conferences, I have been able to refer clients to the appropriate medical providers to provide more integrated, coordinated medical, psychiatric, and psychological care. As a result, I have seen a huge difference in the quality of life and clinical outcomes of those clients who were able to access medical care for their inflammatory brain disorder. I highly encourage more medical and mental health providers to learn about these inflammatory conditions and attend the Neuroimmune Foundation’s conferences so that more individuals can have access to the diagnosis and treatment of these disorders.

Zoe Gillispie, Ph.D
Psychologist, San Carlos, CA

This is a very challenging field. I learned a way of thinking about psychiatric and neurological conditions that will help me in my practice, particularly for patients who do not fit well the characteristic diagnostic criteria for psychiatric conditions.

Paulo J Negro, MD, PhD
Psychiatry, Columbia, MD

This was a very high level of information. As a primary care practitioner, a lot of it was new. I enjoyed the challenge and have gained a great deal of insight into the effects and treatment for neuropsychiatric illness.

Nicole Anderson, CPNP-PC
Pediatrician, Climax, NC

As a primary care physician, this conference offered valuable insights into lesser-known medical conditions, providing practical knowledge on their diagnosis and treatment.

Tarah Freyman, DO
Family Medicine, West Palm Beach, FL

I feel that overall, this conference helps me to be more aware of potential etiologies and treatments for mental health conditions that I might otherwise overlook or not realize.

Karen D. Miles, M.D.
Psychiatrist, Durham, NC

Great presentation. Hope it can be shown to many primary care and secondary care providers. There is a scarcity of specialists that believe these are real entities. It would be wonderful to expose them to the SCIENCE that makes this up and spread the word enabling treatment for these conditions 1. in the system and more available so patients do not have to travel as far to get treated.

David A Katz, DO
Pediatrician, Cary, NC