Division of Neurosurgery   
Phone: 217-545-8000
FAX: 217-545-0253 
Email: neurosurgery@siumed.edu 
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Neurosurgery Residency Overview

Southern Illinois University School of Medicine has a long tradition of excellence in resident education, and especially in education of residents in the surgical specialties.  SIU has developed innovative techniques for evaluation of each resident’s progress and developing skills in the six ACGME identified competencies. 

The Neurosurgery Residency program is designed to allow thorough training in the art and science of Neurosurgery.  This training not only involves skills obtained in the operating room but also in the clinic and in the laboratory.  The laboratory includes not only work in the SIU Surgical Skills Lab using animal and anatomic models, but also includes opportunities for research in basic neurosciences.

Residents will be assigned a faculty “mentor” who will help guide the resident throughout their residency years. 

Each resident in the PGY-2 through PGY-7 year is expected to conduct an investigation in a clinical or basic science research topic and report on this topic at a yearly Neurosurgery Research Conference in June.

Because this is a new program, the first few residents will have a unique operative experience.  When on Neurosurgery they will have their pick of every neurosurgical case at SIU. 

In Springfield, the cost of living is low and most residents own their own homes.  It is a great place to start and raise a family.  On the other hand, when desired, there is easy access to Chicago (3 hours by car) or St. Louis (90 minutes by car).  There are also 5 Amtrak trains every day to these cities.

PGY -1

L-R Front Row: Leslie Acakpo-Satchivi, MD Jeffrey Cozzens, MD Jose Espinosa, MD Diane Cox, PA
Rhonda Cunningham, MA Sandy McQueen, LPN Patty Klos, NP Tedra Grimm, RN,
Stephanie Solomon, FNP Margaret MacGregor, MD
Back Row: Ann Sparks, NP-C Elvia Washington, FNP Devin Amin, MD Scott Herpstreith

The PGY-1 resident will start on the Neurosurgery service, where they will get a chance to experience SIU Neurosurgery first–hand, getting an early understanding of what SIU Neurosurgery has to offer.  During this first month, the resident will be expected to attend the Society of Neurological Surgeons Boot Camp.  Throughout this year, the resident will also attend courses in the SIU Surgical Skills Laboratory as part of the SIU Department of Surgery .  All PGY-1 residents in the SIU Department of Surgery will be evaluated for the acquisition of cross-specialty surgical skills through a VOP program for PGY1 residents. These VOP’s were developed at SIU for General Surgery and have been incorporated into Phase I of the ACS/APDS curriculum. Residents must complete the VOP’s (Verification of Proficiency) with a passing performance by faculty before serving as the operating surgeon of the associated case in the OR.


In the second month, the PGY-1 resident will rotate on the Neuroradiology service at both hospitals where they will learn the basics of reading and interpreting neuro-images.

In the third month, the PGY-1 resident will rotate on the Anesthesia service at Memorial Medical center where the they will learn the basics of anesthesia, including gaining proficiency in intubation, starting intravenous lines, arterial lines, etc.

The first three rotations (Neurosurgery, Neuroradiology, and Anesthesia) prepare the PGY-1 resident for their first experience in the Neurocritical Care Service.

In the next three months, the PGY-1 resident will rotate on the Neurocritical Care service at both hospitals.  This will be the first three months of a total six month experience in Neurocritical Care.  The PGY-1 resident will learn basic and advanced skills related to the care of critically ill patients with neurological disorders.  Skills learned in the Boot Camp simulation labs will be used under supervision of the neurosurgery and neurocritical care faculty.

In January the PGY-1 resident will rotate on the Orthopedic service at both hospitals, learning skills related to this specialty.

In February the PGY-1 resident will rotate on the Plastic Surgery service at both hospitals, learning skills related to this specialty, especially related to wound care.

In March the PGY-1 resident will rotate on the Trauma service at the hospital which is currently the Level I trauma center, learning skills related to this specialty.

In the last three months, the PGY-1 resident will rotate on the Neurology Service at both hospitals, fulfilling the requirements related to this specialty.

PGY-2

The PGY-2 resident will spend the first nine months of the year as a junior resident on the Neurosurgery Service at both hospitals, participating in pre-operative and post-operative care and in the operating room during neurosurgical procedures.  The last three months will be spent on the Neurocritical Care service at both hospitals, taking greater responsibility for patients than previously.  While on the Neurosurgery service, residents will also be assigned to participate in an outpatient clinic for one half-day per week either at the SIU Neurosurgery Outpatient Clinic or the Springfield Clinic Neurosurgery Outpatient Clinic.

PGY-3

The PGY-3 resident will spend the first three months of this year devoted to learning the skills of advanced Neuroradiology including the interpretation of neuroimages and the performance of neuroradiological procedures including neuroangiography and myelography. The second three months will be devoted to learning skills related to Neuropathology.  During this time the resident will also be able to spend time in Basic Neuroscience and developing relationships with basic science researchers.  During this time the resident will attend the Society of Neurological Surgeons Research Update in Neuroscience for Neurosurgeons (RUNN) course at Wood’s Hole, Massachusetts in the fall. In the next three months the PGY-3 resident will spend three months on the Neuro-endovascular service, developing more skills in angiography and also neuroendovascular interventional techniques. Finally, in the last three months, the PGY-3 resident will return to the Neurosurgery service as an intermediate level resident, participating in pre-operative and post-operative care and in the operating room during neurosurgical procedures.  While on the Neurosurgery service, residents will also be assigned to participate in an outpatient clinic for one half-day per week either at the SIU Neurosurgery Outpatient Clinic or the Springfield Clinic Neurosurgery Outpatient Clinic.

During this year, the PGY-3 resident will also be expected to participate in a SIU Human Investigations Program. The course is a faculty driven program with full interactive projects and activities, grading, face to face attendance at lectures and small group activities. The course covers informatics, including the location of existing medical evidence, use of information technology to compile, extend and evaluate evidence including meta-analysis, as well as evidence based medicine, including appraising the quality and level of clinical data, assimilating evidence from scientific studies, and applying information to patient care. As part of the course, each resident is expected to design a clinical trial or study that can be carried out in a reasonable amount of time.

PGY-4


The PGY-5 resident will spend the year as an intermediate-level resident on the Neurosurgery Service at both hospitals, participating in pre-operative and post-operative care and in the operating room during neurosurgical procedures..  While on the Neurosurgery service, residents will also be assigned to participate in an outpatient clinic for one half-day per week either at the SIU Neurosurgery Outpatient Clinic or the Springfield Clinic Neurosurgery Outpatient Clinic.

PGY-5


The PGY-4 resident will spend the year as a senior-level resident on the Neurosurgery Service at both hospitals, participating in pre-operative and post-operative care and in the operating room during neurosurgical procedures.  While on the Neurosurgery service, residents will also be assigned to participate in an outpatient clinic for one half-day per week either at the SIU Neurosurgery Outpatient Clinic or the Springfield Clinic Neurosurgery Outpatient Clinic.

PGY-6


The PGY-6 resident will spend the entire year devoted to an elective.  This can either be in the laboratory doing basic science research, as an SIU Spine Fellow (if chosen for this), or some  other research activity.  The PGY-6 Resident is not expected to take call for Neurosurgery, but may take call related to the elective if necessary.

PGY-7


The PGY-7 resident is the Chief Resident in Neurosurgery at SIU at both hospitals, participating in pre-operative and post-operative care and in the operating room during neurosurgical procedures.   This year is devoted to learning neurosurgical skills at the senior level as well as teaching the more junior residents.  While on the Neurosurgery service, residents will also be assigned to participate in an outpatient clinic for one half-day per week either at the SIU Neurosurgery Outpatient Clinic or the Springfield Clinic Neurosurgery Outpatient Clinic.