Voice of APLAR_Issue #1 | Page 2

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APLAR Editorial Board
Editor-in-Chief
• Zhanguo Li
Associate Editors
• Yoshiya Tanaka
• Jose Paulo Lorenzo
• Humeira Badsha
• Shikta Dey
Executive Associate Editor
• Yue Yang
Advisory Board
• Syed Atiqul Haq
• Debashish Danda
• Kazuhiko Yamamoto
• Kevin Pile
• Rohini Handa
• Chak-Sing Lau
• Ho-Youn Kim
• Temy Mo Yin Mok
• Shue-Fen Luo
• Yeong Wook Song
• Xiaofeng Zeng
• Swan Sim Yeap
• Dae Hyun Yoo
• Lai-Shan Tam
Board members
• Shamim Ahmed
• Chi-Cheng Zhang
• Nazrul Islam
• James Wei
• Wenchan Tsai
• Tsutoma Takeuchi
• Worawit Louthrenoo
• Arvind Chopra
• Lisa Stamp
• Layla Kazkaz
• Lami Hamijoyo
• Sami Salman
• Tohira Umer
• Yan Zhao
• Fereydoun Davatchi
• Shamim Ahmed
• Therese Natividad
• Padmanabha Shenoy
• Anna Rubio
• YK Cheng
• Zimba Olena
To our fellow rheumatologists ,

With great pleasure we welcome you to the Voice of APLAR newsletter , a quarterly publication dedicated to the field of rheumatology in the Asia- Pacific region . As the name suggests , the aim of this newsletter is to provide a voice or forum for rheumatology professionals from various cultures , backgrounds and research fields , to not only share and discuss their clinical experiences but also help build professional networks . It will promote a sense of community across the region .

Each issue will provide expert insights about practice-changing advances , profile upcoming leaders in the field , as well as outline APLAR ’ s calendar of activities and programs . Apart from being a peer-reviewed publication , the Voice of APLAR is intended to be a light and leisurely read that captures a snapshot of topics related to the life of a rheumatologist from all corners of Asia-Pacific region .
I thank all the editorial board members and our colleagues for providing valuable feedback during the pre-development survey . I would also extend our gratitude to all guest contributors , without whom this newsletter would not have been possible . Voice of APLAR will be inclusive of a diverse range of views , and welcomes articles of original research , reviews , case studies , critical commentaries and works-in-progress .
In this issue , our first article features insights from Prof Kei Ikeda who explains the role and considerations of ultrasound technology to diagnose patients with rheumatic diseases in Japan . It will likely come as no surprise that the COVID-19 pandemic continues to be a common talking point across the region and as a result , is a key topic covered in this issue . Dr Irwin Lim from Australia discusses potential interactions between COVID-19 vaccines and immunosuppressive rheumatic therapies . We also explore how the Pakistan Society of Rheumatology has approached the COVID-19 situation and share the captivating life journey of Dr Shahida Perveen . Finally , this is followed by a report on the updated APLAR consensus statements on care for patients with rheumatic diseases during the COVID-19 pandemic , in the International Journal of Rheumatic Diseases .
If you are interested in becoming a contributor to future issues , we would be excited to hear from you . Please send us correspondence outlining your topic of interest and we will respond as soon as possible following a review .
Zhanguo Li
CHIEF EDITOR VOICE OF APLAR
secretariat @ aplar . org

RHEUM WITH A VIEW

Ultrasound – a simple , cheap , and effective approach for the early diagnosis of rheumatoid arthritis
Professor Kei Ikeda
PROFESSOR OF RHEUMATOLOGY , DEPARTMENT OF ALLERGY AND CLINICAL IMMUNOLOGY , CHIBA UNIVERSITY HOSPITAL , JAPAN

Most of us view Japan as one of the leading countries in technology with access to highly advanced diagnostic tools such as MRI , CT , and PET scans . And yet , many Japanese rheumatologists are using a simple , cheap , and effective tool to diagnose rheumatoid arthritis – ultrasound . Not only is ultrasound useful to visualise joint inflammation , it also provides an opportunity to make a diagnosis before functional damage manifests .

In a recent interview , Prof Kei Ikeda , a rheumatologist at Chiba University , shared his clinical experience about the use of ultrasound for diagnosing rheumatoid arthritis . Read on to find out more about Dr Ikeda and how he applies this technique in practice .