Approximately two to four half days per week are spent in interventional procedures at the UC Irvine Health Center for Pain & Wellness at the Gottschalk Medical Plaza. We utilize two fluoroscopy suites, a state-of-the-art ultrasound machine, and a full suite of recovery bays. All procedures are staffed by an attending physician and a radiology technician/technologist.
Approximately three to five half days per week are spent in our outpatient center at the Gottschalk Medical Plaza. We utilize six examination rooms, an electromyography/nerve conduction study machine (EMG machine) and a musculoskeletal ultrasound machine for both diagnostic and therapeutic purposes. We are located near the UC Irvine Physical Therapy, therefore affording us a close relationship with our therapist colleagues. We also staff our pain psychologist, allowing the fellow to experience the multimodal therapies useful in the treatment of chronic pain.
Approximately one to two half days per week are spent in subspecialty rotations* which includes the following:
*Fellows with residency completion in physical medicine and rehabilitation or anesthesiology or neurology or psychiatry are excused from the applicable rotations.
Our special affiliation with the CHOC Children's, which boasts a strong pediatric pain research program, provides our fellows with a unique research opportunity. We are also closely aligned with the Palliative Care program. Finally, our fellows have access to specialized acute and regional anesthesiology and neuroradiology/musculoskeletal radiology fellowship training programs that will broaden their diagnostic and interventional experience.
Each fellow will rotate through the Acute Pain Service, a consultation service for inpatients with acute or chronic pain. In addition they will have exposure to ultrasound guided regional anesthesia for approximately four weeks per year.
Operating room procedures which include trials of spinal cord stimulation, implantation of dorsal column and peripheral nerve stimulators, and trialing and implantation of intrathecal drug delivery systems, occur in the state-of-the-art operating rooms at the main hospital.
Didactic events include small group board oriented lectures (with review questions), physical examination practice sessions, journal club discussions and multidisciplinary case conferences. We have approximately 10 hours of didactics per week. The curriculum includes all ACGME-required topics plus didactics that focus on epidemiology and research preparation, research study design, pain medicine board preparation, pain practice business preparation, billing and coding just to name a few. Our curriculum overall, is highly innovative and structured and well prepares graduates for both board certification and practical knowledge and expertise.
Fellows take about one weekend per month of at home beeper call. When on call, the fellow rounds on the weekend on inpatients on our consultation service. Work hours are kept within ACGME limits at all times. Although most fellows find more free and enjoyable time in fellowship as compared to residency, a department Wellness Center is available 24/7 to assist with stress management.
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