PAAO President’s Message

August 2023

Paulo E.C. Dantas, MD PhD
PAAO President, 2022-2025

Dear friends and colleagues,

What is going to be your legacy to this world?

We all know that life moves at its own pace and that one day we will come to an end on this sphere we know as Earth. Each one in their faith believes in what will come after our passage on the blue planet.

Despite this, we are never sufficiently prepared to find ourselves suddenly separated from our loved ones.
We recently lost our dear Prof Francisco “Paco” Contreras, former president of PAAO and a very dear person among his peers. His polite and smooth way when dealing with thorny issues, his calm and patience with everyone was something admirable in someone in a leadership position and with so many decisions to make.

He left us a huge legacy, both from the point of view of preventing blindness (his passion and reason for living), as well as leaving us messages on how to live our lives intensely, but kindly.

Today we know that conscious memory is initially stored in the prefrontal cortex, then converted into long-term memory in the hippocampus and finally stored in the same areas of the cortex that originally processed the information, for example, memories of visual images are stored in the visual cortex.

But I simplify it: I keep them all in my Pan-American heart.

Long live the legacy of Prof Contreras!


Paulo E.C. Dantas, MD PhD
PAAO President, 2022-2025
Editor-in-Chief, The Pan-American Journal of Ophthalmology (