International Forum for the Study of Itch (IFSI)

Mission:

Our mission is to advance itch-related research and education and to promote treatment and clinical efforts to help alleviate this debilitating symptom. Our main goal is to create an active society that will contribute to the study of Itch. IFSI also distributes recent information about pruritus research and developments by newsletters to its members, the international medical community and the public at large through various media. IFSI conducts international meetings every second year (World Congress of Itch, WCI) where researchers present the latest findings in the field. The official Journal of the IFSI is the Itch, an open-access journal. IFSI supports the publication of high quality papers in Itch, which is currently offering waivers of publication fees for submitted articles.

What is IFSI?

The International Society for the Study of Itch (IFSI) is a multidisciplinary international association of clinical practitioners, researchers and scientists dedicated to improving our understanding and treatment of pruritus for the benefit of suffering patients worldwide. The Society is a non-profit professional organization (registered in NC, USA). Membership is open to clinicians, researchers, scientists and other health professionals engaged in the research and treatment of itch.


Chronic itch during the COVID-19 pandemic

Heidelberg (Germany), June 2020 – Chronic itch is a frequent symptom in many skin conditions and can also occur in the setting of chronic kidney failure, cholestatic liver disease or neurological conditions. Itch occurs worldwide. While itch may be most prevalent in infectious skin diseases in many tropical and subtropical countries, chronic diseases frequently often show chronic itch in Western countries. Chronic itch is a very impairing and very burdensome symptom that needs help. Even during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic, diagnostics and treatment of patients with chronic itch must not be allowed to take a back seat.

"These patients must not be left alone. They have a right to be treated appropriately. Even in times of a corona pandemic, good drug therapy options are available to those affected", emphasizes Professor Elke Weisshaar, president of IFSI. Patients should consult their dermatologist, who can refer them to an itch expert.

Chronic itch is often difficult to treat, especially because in about 1/3 of the cases the cause remains unclear. Often, different medical disciplines are consulted to find the appropriate treatment for the patient. In addition to drug therapy, patients also receive behavioural tips for dealing with the pruritus as well as – if necessary – psychological support.

The International Forum for the Study of Itch (IFSI) is a multidisciplinary international association of clinical practitioners, researchers and scientists dedicated to improving our understanding and treatment of itch for the benefit of suffering patients worldwide. The Society is a non-profit charitable organization (501c3 status registered in NC, USA). Membership is open to clinicians, researchers, scientists and other health professionals engaged in the research and treatment of itch.

Contact
Prof. Dr. med. Elke Weisshaar
University Hospital Heidelberg
Occupational Dermatology
Department of Dermatology
Voßstr. 2
69115 Heidelberg
Germany
Email: Elke.Weisshaar@med.uni-heidelberg.de

How to become a member
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The International Forum for the Study of Itch (IFSI) reaffirms the importance of treatment during the COVID-19 pandemic
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News
WCI 2021 cancelled – Due to the insecurities in health and instable world economical situation the IFSI Board of Directors decided to cancel the World Congress of Itch (WCI) in Shanghai, China, 2021.
As a substitute, we may offer a smaller virtual congress in 2021. Furthermore, we will observe the worldwide situation. We are positive that we can definitely organize the WCI in 2023 as a Face-to-face congress again. We will keep our members and those being interested informed about this. Stay safe and healthy!
Please note a current book publication. The first comprehensive review of common and different pathways and mechanisms of itch and pain.
Gil Yosipovitch, Lars Arendt-Nielsen, Hjalte Andersen. Itch and Pain. Similarities, Interactions and Differences. Wolters Kluwer 2020
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News
News
SECURE-AD Registry update
Please note current information from the SECURE-AD Team

Dear colleague,
Thank you very much for your continued support of the SECURE-AD registry: https://www.secure-derm.com/. To date we have collected data on 190 eczema cases with a confirmed or suspected COVID episode, which is excellent.
Please continue to enter your cases at this critical time – before the window of opportunity to gather this data has passed. We will include everyone who enters a case as a co-author under the SECURE-AD Study Group in resulting publications.
It would also be great if you could share this initiative via social media, tagging us @ad_secure (Twitter) and @secure.derm (Instagram) (links to follow us on Twitter and Instagram).

Many thanks for your contribution.

With kind regards,
The SECURE-AD Team
The Journal Itch:
Itch, the official journal of the International Forum for the Study of Itch (IFSI)
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