The Department of Neurological Surgery at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital and the Jefferson Hospital for Neuroscience represents one of the busiest academic neurosurgery programs in the country, offering comprehensive management for patients with neurosurgical diseases affecting the brain and spine. With a faculty of fifteen neurosurgeons, over four thousand procedures are performed each year. This is a 7 year program, approved to train 3 residents per year.
A significant expansion of clinical and basic neuroscience research encompasses a variety of areas, ranging from cerebrovascular disease to gene therapy and investigations on behavior and epilepsy.
The Neurosurgical tradition at Jefferson Medical College, the second oldest medical school in America, began with the country's first successful brain operation by Jefferson professor W.W. Keen in the 19th century.
Residents play an active and critical role in the department, and are considered to be valuable and integral members of the team.
Neurosurgical clinical experience is primarily obtained during the rotations at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital and the Jefferson Hospital for Neuroscience.
During each rotation on clinical neurosurgery services, daily rounds are made with the faculty members, during which treatment strategies are formulated, based on integration of the details of history and physical examination, along with laboratory, radiographic and consultative information. Active participation of the residents in the decision-making process is strongly encouraged in order to enhance diagnostic acumen and basic pre- and post-operative management skills. Intensive care unit rounds are made in conjunction with the Critical Care/Anesthesia faculty, and in this setting, treatment of acute cerebral dysfunction and spinal cord injury are stressed.
Outpatient clinical experience is provided primarily at Thomas Jefferson University Hospital under direct supervision of the attending staff. This essential component of the resident's education enhances the ability to order and interpret diagnostic studies and independently arrive at a diagnosis and plan of management. In addition, a large and broad volume of surgical procedures provides residents with the necessary operative skills and judgement to become excellent clinical surgeons, steeped in the academic tradition of neurosurgery. Pediatric neurosurgical exposure is obtained primarily at the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia during a dedicated four month rotation under the guidance of Dr. Leslie N. Sutton and Dr. Philip Storm, internationally renowned pediatric neurosurgeons.
As part of the significant expansion of research activities of the Department of Neurological Surgery, residents are now required to pursue at least one full year of research with no overlapping clinical responsibilities.
With a large clinical and basic neurosurgical research program and other research opportunities, residents gain an extensive exposure to academic neurosurgery, supplemented by a basic neuroscience lecture series and research conferences.
Junior residents are encouraged and subsidized to attend one regional meeting or special course per year, pending the approval of the Department Chairman or Residency Director. Armed Forces Institute of Pathology (Neuropathology) courses, the Annual Review Course in Neurosurgery, the Woods Hole Research Update in Neuroscience for Neurosurgeons (RUNN) course, Pennsylvania Neurosurgical Society, PAN Philadelphia Neurosurgery Conference, and various surgical skills seminars or subspecialty section meetings are recommended.
Senior residents are expected to attend either the Congress of Neurological Surgeons or the American Association of Neurological Surgeons annual meeting. The expenses for these conferences are defrayed by the department. In addition, residents who have papers accepted for presentation at national meetings are allowed to present these papers, at the department's expense, pending approval of the chairman.
Dr. Robert Rosenwasser
Chairman of Neurological Surgery
Dr. Ashwini Sharan
Residency Program Director
The 2009 Jefferson Neurosurgery Softball Team. Residents participate each year in the Annual Charity Softball Tournament. The tournament, held each June in Central Park, is held to benefit pediatric brain tumor research. Last year, 17 neurosurgery programs participated in the tourrnament.