By Aimée Cowher
The best minds in pediatric cardiomyopathy met last week in Maryland at the Third International Conference on Cardiomyopathy in Children. GPS was a major sponsor of the conference hosted by the Children’s Cardiomyopathy Foundation. This conference is the only one of its kind bringing together pediatric cardiologists, geneticists, and epidemiologists to identify critical research areas, share best practices and research findings on pediatric cardiomyopathy.
When I spoke with Dr. Steve Lipshultz, conference chair, he shared how much progress has been made over the years to better understand the difference between adult and pediatric cardiomyopathy in terms of its diagnosis and treatment. He also acknowledged that much of that progress has been recent and this conference has made a significant contribution to that progress.
Given the opportunity to address the group, I did so from the perspective of a mother who lost a son to hypertrophic cardiomyopathy, not as the CEO of the major sponsor. I expressed what an honor it was to attend and to witness first hand their heartfelt commitment to making a difference for patients and their families. I also thanked Lisa Yue, President and Founder of CCF, for creating the vehicle that enables others to jump on board without having to pave to their own way. CCF is making a difference in the passionate pursuit of their mission – to accelerate the search for a cure by stimulating and supporting promising research on pediatric cardiomyopathy, by educating and assisting physicians and patients on the complexities of the disease, and by increasing awareness and advocacy on behalf of affected children and their families.
GPS supports CCF thru the Kyle John Rymiszewski Foundation, which was formed in loving memory of my son Kyle, who succumbed to hypertrophic cardiomyopathy in 2009 just before is 16th birthday. The foundation celebrates Kyle’s life by making a difference for patients and families afflicted by this terrible disease.