SNMMI annual meeting 2017 was held at Colorado Convention Center in Denver, Colorado June 10th-14th. Denver is known as the Mile-High City because it is exactly one mile (1609.3 meters) above sea level. I arrived at Denver Airport around 1 o'clock. On my way to the hotel, my first impression about this city was "nothing interesting here" and the days after proved that!
The well-known Rocky Mountain Range, that Colorado is famous for, and its beautiful lakes are located in a two-hour drive from Denver, and so are the other parks and historical places of Colorado. All I could do in Denver was strolling around downtown, do some shopping and dropping by souvenir shops.
At the beginning, I was worried about my first trip to the USA. However, all the people I met at the Welcome Reception were very kind and friendly. The lady at registration desk said: "I have hosted many students from the middle east, I like your culture!". Another one smiled and said: "Happy Ramadan". While walking back to the hotel, many people greeted me: "Assalamulaikum!"(Arabic). With those welcoming Americans I met on my first day, I had nothing to worry about.
More than 5000 physicians, pharmacists and technologists from more than 60 countries across the world attended this meeting. This year, Germany was chosen to participate as the Highlight Country at the 2017 SNMMI annual meeting. The latest technology, research and clinical advances in Germany were discussed with a focus on the development of theranostics using alpha radiation therapy- the coming revolution. I was impressed by the interesting cases presented and the complete response those cases showed to nuclear medicine therapy "Curing the incurable!".
I attended several CE lectures and scientific sessions and learned about new radiotracers and technologies. Many interesting papers were presented, and it was my first time to see animal experiments using a horse. Case review lectures on CT and MRI and "Read with the expert in pediatric nuclear medicine" were very informative, not just in terms of scientific contents but also the presenting abilities and scientific communication of speakers.
Poster hall was full of fascinating posters and I got the chance to talk to some of the authors. I also talked about my research to some of the attendants, and got some interesting ideas and notes, although I had difficulty understanding a question of an Indian doctor with a strong Indian accent!
I met participants from the middle east, Chile, India, Germany, China, UK, Thailand , Mexico and other universities of Japan. It was a valuable experience for me to present my research, to interact with others from all over the globe and to know the cutting-edge research in all areas of nuclear medicine.
At the end of the last day of the meeting, I had the chance to visit Denver Botanic Gardens and it happened to be the free admission day! I spent a couple of hours there, a pretty place with plenty of beautiful plants and flowers. After that I went to the Capitol, the center of Colorado's state government. It was interesting to see how the local government works and enjoy the beautiful architecture and artworks. The view of the surrounding buildings at the top was great.
I headed to the airport next morning. The taxi driver said: "Welcome to Colorado. Would you like to come again?" I answered:"Definitely!".
With all the knowledge I gained and all the kind and respectful people I met, this trip couldn't have been more impressive.
The Blue Bear, Denver city icon.
Colorado Convention Center
Denver Botanic Gardens