This year is spent entirely at UW Hospital where our residents become fully immersed in clinical neurosurgery. From the start of this year our residents are exposed to subspecialty neurosurgical practice. This means that out of a 4 quarter year they spend 1 quarter each in pediatric neurosurgery, spine, and adult cranial tumor/vascular work ( Table 1). The fourth quarter is spent in neuroradiology (see next paragraph). The benefits of subspecialty practice are several: a close working relationship with 2-3 faculty, more efficient acquisition of clinical responsibility and more effective continuity of care experience. This format of subspeciality practice continues through out all resident clinical years.
As mentioned above, the fourth quarter is spent in neuroradiology. The Department of Neurosurgery and the neuroradiology section of the Department of Radiology maintain a close working relationship. Neuroradiologists are adjunct faculty of our department. An endovascular fellowship trained neurosurgeon, Dr. David Niemann, is co-director of a joint endovascular training program. The other co-director is Dr. Beverly Aagaard-Kienitz a neuroradiologist.
The timing of the 3-month Neuroradiology rotation to the PG-2 year indicates the importance we place on early acquisition of interpretive neuroradiology skills in CT and MRI. In addition, this resident performs diagnostic cerebral angiography under direct supervision and assists in endovascular interventional procedures.