The Spanish Society of Periodontology and Osseointegration (SEPA) celebrated its 60th anniversary at a well-attended congress in Valencia from May 29 to June 1.
A total of 6,107 periodontists, dentists, hygienists and others involved in oral healthcare attended the congress, including 980 international delegates from around 60 countries.
The event, held at the Feria Valencia congress centre, featured 220 national and international speakers, 330 abstract presentations, and an exhibition with stands from 115 companies.
The congress was organised into four parallel streams, devoted to periodontology, interdisciplinary dentistry, hygiene, and practice management.
There was a significant EFP presence at the SEPA ’19 congress. Speakers included EFP president Filippo Graziani, past president Anton Sculean, and Journal of Clinical Periodontology editor Maurizio Tonetti. There was an EFP area within the congress, which was used to promote Perio Master Clinic 2020, including a speech from the event’s chair Declan Corcoran.
One of the highlights of the congress was the awarding of the SEPA Foundation’s Platinum Medal to Mariano Sanz, professor of periodontology at the Complutense University of Madrid.
Prof Sanz was awarded the medal in recognition of a long career in periodontology, where his research has made major contributions in areas such as periodontal and bone regeneration, antimicrobial agents and periodontal disease, and peri-implant diseases.
He has co-ordinated many international workshops, including the EFP’s annual European Workshop in Periodontology (Perio Workshop) which he has chaired since 2010. He has also been president of both SEPA and the EFP and has served on three EuroPerio organising committees.
“Mariano Sanz is periodontology. He is synonymous with science in periodontology, he is synonymous with education in periodontology and he is someone who has most influenced the development of periodontology over the last thirty years,” said Adrián Guerrero, SEPA president (2016-19).
For Juan Blanco (EFP president 2016-17), “Academically, Mariano is unequalled. I think he is the heir to the great periodontists at world level – Jan Lindhe, Niklaus Lang, Raúl Caffesse, and today Mariano Sanz.”
Jan Lindhe, one of Prof Sanz’s mentors, added: “Mariano is a unique person. We have many good researchers, we have many good clinicians, we have many good administrators in dentistry. But we have only one Mariano Sanz who combines all these great things into one person.”
“It is not common to receive such a wide recognition in one’s own country and on this occasion the support of SEPA, of the University, and of all the professional sectors has been practically unanimous,” commented Mariano Sanz. “Perhaps what has most moved me has been the affection and recognition of all the periodontists that I have trained over these 30 years. We have created a great family around the Complutense University of Madrid and there is a great sense of belonging and of pride in being part of this family.”
SEPA also produced a video tribute to Mariano Sanz, which includes contributions from his mentors, his colleagues, and his students.
A new board for SEPA took office during the congress, with Antonio Bujaldón replacing Adrián Guerrero as president. The other members of the board, which will serve until 2022, are José Nart (vice president), Paula Matesanz (secretary general), Olalla Argibay, Andrés Pascual, Ignacio Sanz Sánchez (vocal), and Francisco Vijande.