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AAE16 Preview: Surprises in San Francisco

AAE16LogoAfter more than 70 years of successful annual meetings, most AAE members know what to expect from the event – opportunities to meet and network with peers, the largest endodontic exhibit hall in the world and exceptional lectures from leaders in the endodontic field. But in a year when Dr. Terryl A. Propper is president, it also can be expected that AAE16 will have some surprises in store.

This year’s meeting will feature a broader range of speakers, from both inside and outside endodontics, and more variety in program formats. Though some educational sessions will continue to utilize the traditional single-presenter format, many will incorporate multiple speakers in such alternative presentation formats as point/counterpoint debates, “talk show-style” interviews and panel discussions.

“Our membership ranges from under 30 years old to over 80 years old, and everyone learns differently,” said Dr. Robert B. Amato, AAE16 general chair. “We need to integrate new ways of learning into the meeting in order to engage people at every level.”

Though the formats may be different, the educational session content is as strong as ever, with sought-after speakers presenting on subjects critical to the specialty. The popular Nonsurgical Endodontics, Surgical Endodontics and Endodontic Practice tracks are returning and will be joined by two new tracks: Interdisciplinary Care and Derailment.

The Interdisciplinary Care track will feature topics, including pain, trauma and imaging, that often involve dental and medical specialties outside of endodontics. Many of these sessions will utilize the panel discussion format, bringing endodontic experts together with leaders in orofacial pain, otolaryngology and pharmacology, among others, to examine cases from different perspectives.

“We’re covering areas where we need a lot of dialogue with our colleagues in other specialties,” said Dr. Donna J. Mattscheck, AAE16 program chair. “Being able to communicate with these individuals to benefit our patients is key.”

Though educational offerings typically focus on clinical and practice management successes, sessions in the Derailment track will examine what happens when things don’t go as planned. Addressing such topics as managing material extrusion, removing broken file segments, repairing relationships with referring dentists and dealing with staffing issues, presenters in the Derailment track will share personal examples of unsuccessful cases and situations and what they wish they had done differently.

“The fact is that things don’t always go well,” Dr. Mattscheck said. “There can be complications of all different types and it’s only by talking about them that we can help someone else avoid those same complications.”

Another addition to this year’s educational program is the “CE Express” track, offering shorter, more focused sessions of 30 minutes each, held throughout the day on a variety of topics. Many of these sessions provide an overview of a subject or update on the latest advancements, making them conducive to the shorter format. One day of CE Express will be devoted to residents and new practitioners and the unique issues they encounter as they begin their endodontic careers.

Dr. Mattscheck said, “The idea is to present very rapid-fire, distilled-down information in more of a ‘TED Talk style’ of presentation. You’re going to be able to see more people speak on more subjects in a shorter amount of time.”


Even the more traditional sessions like the hands-on surgical workshops have something new to offer this year. Workshops will be held at the nearby University of the Pacific Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry in the school’s new research laboratory. Built in 2014, the state-of-the-art facility provides an ideal setting for attendees to expand their skills in using contemporary microsurgical equipment and performing apical microsurgery.

AAE16’s social events also are sure to impress as they make the most of the local attractions and flavors of San Francisco and surrounding areas. Celebrate San Francisco! will be held at the fascinating Exploratorium museum on the Embarcadero waterfront. Founded by physicist Frank Oppenheimer, the Exploratorium features unique works of art and interactive exhibits that allow guests to experiment with light and sound, mechanical systems, nature and even human behavior.

“San Francisco is a dynamic city – one of the top cities in the world – and Celebrate San Francisco! is going to be a highlight of the week,” Dr. Amato said. “You’re going to be in the coolest science museum ever with incredible views of the Bay and the Bay Bridge.”

In addition, the Welcome Reception is returning this year. Guests will have the opportunity to sample wines and cheeses from the famed Napa Valley and Sonoma County regions, while seeing long-time friends and meeting new ones.

Year after year, the AAE annual meeting provides one of the best venues for endodontists to gain knowledge, explore new products and connect with colleagues. AAE16 will be no exception, and the new educational options are sure to create an even more robust experience for attendees.

“Anyone who knows Dr. Propper knows that she colors outside the lines,” Dr. Mattscheck said. “That’s what she asked the planning committee to do, and I think we delivered.”

Registration for AAE16 is now open! To browse educational sessions, register for the meeting and plan your trip to San Francisco, visit

San Francisco Treats: Highlights of AAE16
CE Express
A series of 30-minute educational sessions will allow attendees to gain fundamental knowledge in various clinical and practice management subjects. Attendees must go to at least two CE Express sessions to earn CE credit.

Program Format Variety
Many educational sessions will incorporate multiple-presenter formats – including point/counterpoint debates, “talk show-style” interviews and panel discussions – providing opportunities for attendees to examine topics and cases from different perspectives.

University of the Pacific Surgical Workshops
With the University of the Pacific Arthur A. Dugoni School of Dentistry just blocks away from the Moscone Center, AAE16 attendees will have access to a state-of-the-art laboratory and surgical operating microscopes while gaining hands-on experience in apical microsurgery.

“The Doctor Is in”
Experts in specific areas of endodontics will be available at various times throughout the meeting to speak with attendees one-on-one or in small groups, answer questions, and discuss cases or issues facing the specialty.