Education & Goals
The fellowship is designed to provide a complete experience in upper extremity problems. At the completion of the fellowship, the participants should be competent to treat congenital and acquired disorders from the brachial plexus to the fingertips in either a private practice or academic setting.
- Development of clinical expertise in the diagnosis and management of all disorders involving the upper extremity
- Refinement of clinical skills in such a way that new problems can be addressed based upon pathophysiologic and patient-oriented information allowing an appropriate course of action to be initiated in patient care
- Attainment of technical and surgical expertise in traumatic, congenital, and acquired disorders of the upper extremity
- Development of a thorough understanding of anatomy and physiology of the upper extremity
- Experience in basic science investigations including clinical review, clinical outcome, and basic research
These goals are obtained through the following educational methods:
- Clinical preceptorship
- Didactic lectures
- Socratic conferences
- Basic science instruction
- Formal research experience
The clinical preceptorship includes experience in the offices of the attendings as well as fellow-directed clinics, emergency room, and operating room. New patients are followed from diagnosis through the selection of treatment plan, pre-operative planning, operative intervention, and post-operative management. Follow-up patients allow the fellows to observe directly the recovery process and to observe long-term results following surgical procedures.
The didactic portion of the education process includes lectures by the faculty during Hand Conference, Trauma Conference, Core Conference, Musculoskeletal Pathology Conference, and guest lectureships.
The Socratic conferences include pre-operative conferences, case presentations at Hand Conference, one-on-one discussions and interchanges during rounds, and direct evaluation of patients in the office.
Basic science instruction includes didactic lectures and a direct educational experience in physiology, pathology, and anatomy. The department has direct access to fresh and embalmed anatomy specimens through the Department of Anatomy. Fresh-frozen upper extremities are available for prosection, dissection, and anatomic studies.
Initiation to research includes experience in clinical follow-up studies, prospective outcome analysis and studies, and basic science. The fellows are afforded 8 hours per week of protected research time. Research endeavors are aided by the orthopaedic extremity laboratory and research facilities.
The activities and progress of the fellows are evaluated monthly. Throughout the fellowship, the fellows keep records detailing clinical experience, educational activities, and research exposure. These are reviewed with the fellow on a monthly basis at which time the fellows are provided feedback regarding performance with an opportunity to critique their educational experience. These evaluations are reviewed by the Education Committee, the director of the hand fellowship, and the director of the orthopaedic program on a quarterly basis.