About this event

  • Date and time Mon 11 May 2020 from 8:45am to 5:15pm
  • Location Royal Society of Medicine
  • Organised by Comparative Medicine

Vets and human doctors often do not have the opportunity to learn from each other and plan collaborative research and strategies to raise awareness and improve care for conditions that affect both humans and animals. This meeting aims to catalyse and encourage such collaborations.

Join us as we discuss the parallels between obstructive sleep apnoea (OSA) in humans and brachycephalic obstructive airway syndrome (BOAS), including developments that are translatable across species.

This is a unique opportunity to learn about comparative medical aspects of upper airway obstruction and its impact on sleep and health. Internationally recognized experts in OSA and BOAS will share and discuss pathophysiology, treatment, new developments and the role of parents and pet owners in recognizing and managing OSA and BOAS.

Attendees can expect to:

  • Learn about the similarities and differences in the pathophysiology of BOAS in animals and OSA in children and adults
  • Learn about developments in diagnosis and treatment - are there any translatable lessons across species?
  • Explore areas for future collaboration across medicine and veterinary medicine, in keeping with One Health
  • Consider opportunities for collaborative working to improve awareness of BOAS and OSA in non-specialist vets and doctors, in parents, pet owners and the general public.
  • Discuss ethical considerations around treatment and quality of life in a range of patients who cannot speak for themselves (animals and young children)

We'll also look to improve your awareness of the impact of even mild upper airway obstruction on sleep and wellbeing across species and to catalyse collaboration across medicine and veterinary medicine to improve standards of care and to develop comparative medical research in the field of BOAS and OSA.

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Early Bird pricing available until 16 February 2020.


RSM Fellow RSM Associate RSM Retired Fellow RSM Trainee RSM Student
£95.00 £55.00 £55.00 £55.00 £30.00

Non - Member

Consultant / GP AHP / Nurse / Midwife Non Healthcare Professional Trainee Student
£133.00 £77.00 £77.00 £77.00 £42.00

Key speakers

Sean Wensley

Sean Wensley BVSc MSc FRCVS

Sean Wensley is Senior Veterinary Surgeon for Communication and Education at the UK veterinary charity, PDSA. He qualified from Liverpool University and holds a Masters degree from Edinburgh University in Applied Animal Behaviour and Animal Welfare.

Speaker's biography

Sean has contributed to animal welfare and conservation projects on five continents. He is an Honorary Lecturer in Animal Welfare at the University of Nottingham and a Guest Lecturer in Animal Welfare at Queen’s University Belfast. He chairs the Federation of Veterinarians of Europe (FVE) Animal Welfare Working Group and was President of the British Veterinary Association (BVA) from 2015 - 2016. In 2017 Sean received the inaugural World Veterinary Association (WVA) Global Animal Welfare Award for Europe.


View the programme

Registration, tea and coffee
Welcome and introduction

Session one


Chair: Dr Martha Julie Bower, President, Comparative Medicine Section, Royal Society of Medicine

One health approaches to preventing the preventable

Dr Sean Wensley, Senior Veterinary Surgeon, Communication and Education, People's Dispensary for Sick Animals

Brachycephalic obstructive airway syndrome, introduction and disease recognition

Dr Jane Ladlow, Head of Soft Tissue Surgery, Animal Health Trust, Lanwades Park, Kentford 

Panel discussion
Tea and coffee break
Title talk TBC

Dr Renata Riha

Peri-operative management of brachycephalic dogs

Sarah Gibson, Clinical Veterinary Anaesthetist, Davies Veterinary Specialists

Panel discussion

Session two

Lessons from obstructive sleep apnoea in children

Dr Catherine McDougall, Consultant in Paediatric Intensive Care and Respiratory Medicine, Royal Hospital for Sick Children, Edinburgh

Carer perceptions of respiratory health in brachycephalic dogs

Dr Rowena Packer, Biotechnology and Biological Sciences Research Council Future Leader Research Fellow, Royal Veterinary College, University of London

Tea and coffee break
Panel discussion and next steps

Chair: Dr Felicity Vidya Mehendale, Director Global Cleft Lip and Palate Research Programme, Global Health Research Centre, Usher Institute, University of Edinburgh

Concluding remarks
Close of meeting


Royal Society of Medicine, 1 Wimpole St, Marylebone, London, W1G 0AE, United Kingdom

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