Vascular Neurology Fellowship
The University of California Davis Comprehensive Stroke Program offers an ACGME accredited one year fellowship in cerebrovascular disease, with an optional second year commensurate with funding. Our goal is to recruit highly motivated, engaged, and qualified candidates interested in pursuing careers in clinical medicine, research scholarship, or health science education. The program engages fellows in comprehensive neurovascular training to develop expertise in the diagnosis and management of ischemic and hemorrhagic stroke. Fellows will be mentored and strongly encouraged to participate in basic and/or clinical science research, quality improvement, and medical education scholarship. The University of California Davis is an established Comprehensive Stroke Center by the Joint Commission with multiple active clinical trials.
ACGME-approved Fellowship rotations:
- Inpatient Vascular Neurology (acute and emergency)
- Neurocritical Care
- Outpatient Vascular Neurology
- Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation
Elective rotation options:
- Neurointerventional surgery
- Neurosonology (Transcranial Doppler and Carotid Sonography)
The Neurovascular fellowship program offers comprehensive training designed to develop expertise in the diagnosis, management, and prevention of cerebrovascular neurologic disorders for a diverse population. The fellow will accomplish this by rotating on multiple subspecialty services—inpatient Stroke service, Neuroradiology, Neurocritical care, Neuroradiology & Neurointerventional Radiology, Neurorehabilitation (inpatient & outpatient)—and be familiar with all related aspects of patient care. The overall fellowship goal is to provide trainees with the knowledge and skills required to:
- Provide high-quality cutting-edge care and assessment for patients with cerebrovascular disease in multiple clinical settings (outpatient, emergency, inpatient). Formalized training will involve diagnostic evaluation, management, treatment, and formation of preventative strategies for stroke care.
- Deliver effective care in a successful interdisciplinary environment working alongside numerous disciplines.
- Manage acute and critically ill neurologic patients with ischemic and hemorrhagic stroke (intraparenchymal, subdural, subarachnoid) from a myriad of causative mechanisms, and related complications (I.e. seizure, herniation syndromes, malignancy).
- Select appropriate diagnostic testing and successfully interpret results when caring for patients with neurovascular disorders.
- Assimilate contemporary evidence-base to improve stroke management and life-long learning.
- Develop careers and become leaders in academic medicine and cerebrovascular neurology.
Clinical Rotations: Goals and Objectives
Stroke Service: The fellow will participate in a minimum of 6 months on the inpatient primary Stroke Service providing acute, emergency, and critical neurological care for patients with cerebrovascular disorders. The fellow is expected to become proficient in managing all aspects of clinical care related to inpatient stroke medicine. The Service cares for and provides consultation throughout UC Davis for patients with acute ischemic stroke, hemorrhagic stroke (intraparenchymal, subarachnoid) and provides teleneurology services for affiliate centers. Additional key goals and objectives while serving as the clinical Stroke fellow are:
- Participate in daily clinical rounds by serving as a primary care provider overseeing all patient care activities throughout an individual’s hospitalization for stroke
- Provide urgent attention for acute stroke activation throughout the University by supervising Neurology residents evaluating patients with possible acute stroke.
- Become proficient in delivering telestroke services to affiliate hospitals
- Become proficient with acute stroke management and decision-making:
- Acute Ischemic Stroke: intravenous and intraarterial thrombolysis; endovascular thrombectomy; antithrombotic treatment and preventative strategies
- Acute Hemorrhagic Stroke: medical and surgical treatment options
- Transient cerebral ischemic syndromes
- Become proficient in secondary stroke prevention strategies
- Become proficient at managing medical complications in patients with acute stroke (I.e. seizure, thrombotic disease, cardiopulmonary complications)
- Develop leadership and supervisor skills while managing the Stroke Service with residents and medical students
Neurocritical Care (NCC) Service: The fellow will spend 2 months on the NCC service (Monday-Friday). She/he will participate in daily rounds with the multidisciplinary team supervised by a neurointensivist. The NCC services cares for all patients with critical brain injury and includes but is not limited to: a) Stroke (ischemic and hemorrhagic), b) traumatic brain injury, c) status epilepticus, d) traumatic spinal cord injury. Primary goals and objectives while rotating on this service include:
- Become familiar with the general principles in managing all aspects of care for critically ill patients with brain injury (I.e. pulmonary complications, sepsis, systemic thrombosis, herniation syndromes, etc.)
- Become familiar with critical care procedures (I.e. central line placement, endotracheal intubation) as seen appropriate by the supervising neurointensivist.
- Recognize critical brain states that require urgent surgical attention
Neuroradiology: The fellow will spend 2-4 weeks in Neuroradiology working closely with board certified neuroradiologists. The key objectives for this experience include:
- Become proficient at interpreting stroke related imaging cranial CT, MRI, head/neck angiography (CT angiography, MR angiography), conventional cerebral angiography, transcranial ultrasound, carotid sonography
- Become familiar/proficient at interpreting spinal imaging in the context of spinal ischemic stroke, hemorrhage, or vascular malformation (MRI, MRA, CT, CTA).
- Describe the risks, benefits, and be familiar with costs of stroke related neuroimaging
- Develop differential diagnostic skills based on neuroimaging interpretation
Neurointerventional Radiology (NIR): The fellow will have an optional 2-week elective in NIR. This service provides diagnostic and therapeutic techniques for cerebrovascular disease using digital subtraction angiography (DSA; aka: conventional cerebral angiography). Common neurovascular conditions that incorporate NIR expertise include cerebral aneurysmal disease, acute large vessel intracranial occlusion, extra-cranial and intracranial arterial stenosis/thrombosis, cerebral and spinal vascular malformations. The goals and objectives include:
- Become familiar with conditions that that benefit from diagnostic and therapeutic DSA.
- Become proficient at interpreting cerebral angiography in patients with cerebrovascular disease. Become familiar with spinal angiography and interpretation.
- Know the risks and benefits of cerebral angiography
Neurorehabilitation: The fellow will spend 4 weeks on the inpatient Neurorehabilitation service. This service provides all aspects of rehabilitation care to patients with all forms of brain and spinal injury. Key goals and objectives for this rotation include:
- Learn the fundamentals of neurologic recovery, rehabilitation interventions, and neuronal plasticity and regeneration.
- Gain experience in working with an interdisciplinary rehabilitation team
- Become proficient in the management of rehabilitation issues following brain and spinal cord injury
Scheduled Clinical Responsibilities:
Inpatient Stroke Service: The Fellow will rotate a minimum of 6 months on the service.
- Team Rounds: (8- 12 pm). The fellow will serve as the junior attending supervised by the Vascular neurology attending. Afternoons following scheduled routine didactics are dedicated resident and fellow work-rounds (1- 5 pm).
- The Fellow will triage all stroke code activations within UC Davis (Emergency, and all inpatient wards) as screened and evaluated by the neurology resident during regular work hours (8- 5 pm)
- The Fellow will be on overnight stroke-call from 5 pm-8 am the following morning). She/he will continue regular ward service supervisory role as junior attending the following day. The fellow will take at-home-overnight call one night in 4 throughout each month they are rotating on The Stroke Service. During their call time throughout the day, and if on-call overnight, they will screen and triage telestroke consultation requests through the UC Davis Transfer Center.
- The Fellow will work approximately 1-2 weekend shifts monthly (both Saturdays and Sundays) while on the Stroke Service.
Collaboration with team science members:
Charles DeCarli, M.D.
Research Focus: Cerebrovascular Disease in Memory and Aging
Carolynn Patten, Ph.D., PT
Research Focus: Biomechanics, Rehabilitation and Neurologic Recovery
UC Davis Biomechanics, Rehabilitation, and Integrative Neuroscience (BRaIN) Lab
Audrey Fan, Ph.D.
Research Focus: Advanced Neuroimaging in Cerebrovascular Disease
Clinical research team members: Amy Hyatt, Cynthia Silva, Molly Lindsay.
The ACGME-approved fellowship year fulfills the necessary criteria for Vascular Neurology board-eligibility offered by the American Board of Psychiatry and Neurology. Our fellows have numerous opportunities to participate in scholarly activities such as acute stroke treatment trials, clinical projects, and interdisciplinary/interprofessional stroke medical education. Vascular Neurology faculty engage in active collaborative scientific and clinical research with faculty in the Departments of Neurological Surgery, Neuroradiology, Cardiology, Emergency Medicine, Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation, as well as the School of Nursing. Examples of active investigation among faculty include genomic studies in ischemic stroke, hemorrhagic stroke, and subarachnoid hemorrhage, magnetic resonance imaging biophysical modeling in stroke, pre-hospital stroke triage, rehabilitation potential following stroke, and the impact of substance use in stroke. In addition, faculty are actively engaged in health professions educational scholarship—the team has championed a University-wide interprofessional curriculum (The PINECLE Project) with the goal of improving neurological assessment among healthcare providers, routinely participates in interdisciplinary academic forums, and engages in medical education research. Fellows will develop independent projects with faculty mentorship with the expectation of presenting their work at a national conference and lead to a published manuscript.
The fellowship program is directed by Kwan Ng, M.D., Ph.D. and the Associate Program Director, Alan Yee, D.O. In addition, other faculty from several disciplines will participate in the educational opportunities presented by this fellowship. Those with specific expertise in Vascular Neurology include:
We are fortunate to have the access and opportunities to learn from various other experts within the fields of:
- Neurocritical Care
- Neurointerventional Surgery
- Vascular Surgery
- Neurovascular Multidisciplinary Case Conference
- Stroke Journal Club
- Neuroradiology Case Conference
- Neurology Department Grand Rounds
- Stroke Basic Science Journal Club
- Neurologic Residency-Neurovascular Noon Conference
- Stroke Faculty Research Group Meeting
We offer one 1-year fellowship position in Vascular Neurology. Qualified candidates will hold an M.D. or D.O. degree from an accredited institution and will have completed a residency in Neurology. Candidates must possess a California medical license prior to the start date of the fellowship and should apply for this at least 4 months in advance. Foreign medical graduates will be considered if they have completed a U.S.-based residency program.
Applications are reviewed in the Fall, a year and half prior to the start of the fellowship year. For fellowships starting in July 2022, our interview dates begin in Fall of 2020 and continue until our fellowship slot is filled. Rolling interviews are scheduled as we receive completed applications. If interested in pursuing this fellowship training opportunity, qualified applicants should email a Curriculum Vitae, 3 letters of recommendation, and a brief letter of intent to the Fellowship Coordinator and complete the Fellowship Application survey.
For fellowships starting July 2023, all applications are submitted through the Electronic Residency Application Service (ERAS). Information regarding ERAS can be found on National Residency Matching Program (NRMP). Interviews will be conducted through the months of November through January.