Clinical Neurophysiology (CNP) Residency Program (Clinical Fellowship)

Brief description of the program:

Our Clinical Neurophysiology Fellowship offers active participation in a program that combines comprehensive training in clinical EEG/epilepsy and EMG/neuromuscular disease to suit individuals interested in one or both tracks. Our faculty expertise and institutional resources in all aspects of these subspecialties also provide excellent education for individuals interested in general clinical neurophysiology (50% EEG/epilepsy and 50% EMG/neuromuscular). Opportunities exist to participate in intramural or extramurally funded basic translational and clinical research projects. This program can be tailored toward individuals interested in academic or private practice careers.

EEG/Epilepsy Track

Clinical Care

Fellows will provide clinical care in inpatient and outpatient settings. The Penfield Epilepsy Service is the inpatient service in the University of Alabama Hospital. Fellows assigned will be responsible for patients admitted including morning rounds, interpretation and dictation of EEG monitoring studies (video EEG, ICU, intraoperative, and carotid studies), and supervision of residents. This service provides exposure to intraoperative electrocorticography for epilepsy surgery, cortical stimulation, ictal SPECT scans, sphenoidal electrode insertions, WADA testing, MEG, and other specialized techniques. As part of their clinical duties, fellows will be available for night and weekend emergency telephone calls and weekend inpatient rounds up to 50% of the time while on the Penfield Epilepsy Service, alternating with one of the faculty physicians and other fellows. Fellows will provide clinical care for patients on both adult and pediatric neurosurgery services as required. Clinical duties also include video EEG monitoring in the Birmingham Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center and in The Children’s Hospital of Alabama. Fellows will provide clinical care in outpatient settings concentrated on evaluating epilepsy patients and EEG reading. Reading polysomnograms once a week at the UAB Highlands facility is also expected. Fellows will participate in weekly performance and interpretation of electrodiagnostic studies in the EMG Laboratory. Fellows also evaluate general neurology patients at the Cooper Green Mercy Hospital under the supervision of an attending physician.

Research

Fellows will have the opportunity to participate in one or more research projects as determined in consultation with the Epilepsy division faculty, who will serve as mentors, or guided by specific interests and goals. The fellowship provides sufficient unscheduled time for these research activities. Emphasis will be placed on applying for funding to support a second year of research intense fellowship based on initial progress and productivity. Grants will be sought from extramural sources such as the American Epilepsy Society or the National Institutes of Health, providing an opportunity to develop specific interests in the field.

Other Educational Activities

Fellows actively participate in a formal weekly EEG/Epilepsy conference where most major topics within the specialty are covered. Additional education is provided through weekly Clinical Neurophysiology Conferences. These include didactic lectures by the epilepsy and neuromuscular faculty, as well as journal and subject reviews in all areas of clinical neurophysiology, including autonomic nervous system testing and polysomnography. Fellows will enhance their education by taking on teaching responsibilities consisting of presentations at the Epilepsy Conferences and periodically at the weekly Clinical Neurophysiology Conferences. As required, fellows will also educate housestaff and medical students through supervision in clinics and formal seminars in EEG/Epilepsy, improving their knowledge base and teaching skills.

Expectations

Full licensure in the State of Alabama (State of Alabama medical license, Alabama Controlled Substance Certificate, and Federal DEA) is required to participate in this fellowship program. Successful completion of all three steps of the USMLE is necessary for Alabama licensure.

During the course of the fellowship, it is expected that fellows will demonstrate progressively increased subspecialty knowledge and progress towards clinical independence by the end of their training. Fellows will have frequent discussions with the EEG/Epilepsy faculty related to the clinical care, specialized evaluation, and diagnosis in inpatient and outpatient settings. Through this extensive training program, fellows will accumulate experience and knowledge to practice in academic or private settings.

Subject to the approval of the Director, attendance of one national meeting such as American Epilepsy Society, the American Clinical Neurophysiology Society (the EEG Society), the American Academy of Neurology, or the American Neurological Association is encouraged. A maximum of $1000 is allotted from the Department of Neurology for approved travel and educational expenses, licenses, etc., during the year of training.

To Apply

Application components:

1.    CV

2.    A personal statement that includes:

a.    Reasons for application

b.    Career plans

c.    How the fellowship will promote your career

3.    Letters of recommendation from three faculty references, preferably from their knowledge of your professional abilities. One letter should be from your Neurology Resident Program Director or Department Chair.

Please send your application and reference letters to:

Ro Elgavish, M.D., Ph.D.
Director, CNP Residency Program, EEG/Epilepsy Track
Associate Professor of Neurology
University of Alabama at Birmingham
CIRC 312
1720 2nd Avenue South
Birmingham, AL 35294-0012
P: (205) 975-5587
F: (205) 996-4802


EMG/Neuromuscular Track

Clinical Care

Fellows will provide clinical care in a predominately outpatient setting. Fellows will be responsible for evaluating and diagnosing patients with neuromuscular disorders and will perform and interpret advanced techniques in electrodiagnostic medicine under faculty supervision. Such techniques include routine nerve conduction studies, blink responses, repetitive nerve stimulation (Jolly test), needle electromyography, single fiber EMG, and evoked potential studies (visual, brainstem auditory, and somatosensory). This work will take place at the EMG Laboratory located in Sparks Center at UAB Hospital. Evaluation of inpatients with neuromuscular disease is also provided through bedside studies in the hospital or assessment in the EMG Laboratory.

Fellows will evaluate patients in general neuromuscular disease outpatient clinics as well as specialty clinics such as the ALS Clinic and the MDA Clinic. An extensive exposure to disorders of the peripheral nervous system is expected through participation in these clinics located at The Kirklin Clinic. Fellows will participate in performing nerve, muscle, and skin biopsies under attending physician supervision. Interpretation of these biopsy specimens prepared in the Shin J. Oh Nerve and Muscle Histopathology Laboratory is an essential aspect of the comprehensive clinical care provided by fellows in this program.

Fellows have the opportunity to perform and interpret electrodiagnostic studies as well as read polysomnograms once a week at the Birmingham Department of Veterans Affairs Medical Center. Fellows participate in weekly interpretation of EEG studies in the Epilepsy Center and evaluate general neurology patients at the Cooper Green Mercy Hospital under the supervision of an attending physician.

An autonomic nervous system laboratory is being developed and fellows will participate in the diagnosis of patients with suspected disorders of the autonomic nervous system.

Research

Fellows will have the opportunity to participate in one or more research projects as determined in consultation with the Neuromuscular Division faculty, who will serve as mentors, or guided by specific interests and goals. There are several ongoing clinical trials in myasthenia gravis, ALS, and CIDP that fellows could actively participate in. Guided by career goals, opportunities exist to participate in basic and translational science projects in neuromuscular medicine. Based on initial progress and productivity, grants to support early stage career development will be sought from extramural sources such as the National Institutes of Health, provided the fellow is committed to a career in academic neurology.


Other Educational Activities

Fellows actively participate in weekly Clinical Neurophysiology Conferences. These include didactic lectures by the epilepsy and neuromuscular division faculty, as well as journal and subject reviews in all areas of clinical neurophysiology, including the autonomic nervous system testing and polysomnography. Weekly conferences in neuromuscular pathology provide further educational opportunities with access to over 40-years of specimens. Fellows will enhance their education by taking on teaching responsibilities consisting of presentations at the Neuromuscular Pathology Conference and periodically at the weekly Clinical Neurophysiology Conference. As required, fellows will also educate housestaff and medical students through informal interactions in the clinic and EMG Laboratory as well as formal seminars in EMG/neuromuscular disease, improving their knowledge base and teaching skills.

Expectations

Full licensure in the State of Alabama (State of Alabama medical license, Alabama Controlled Substance Certificate, and Federal DEA) is required to participate in this fellowship program. Successful completion of all three steps of the USMLE is necessary for Alabama licensure.

During the course of the fellowship, it is expected that fellows will demonstrate progressively increased subspecialty knowledge and progress towards clinical independence by the end of their training. Fellows will have frequent discussions with the EMG/neuromuscular faculty related to the clinical care, specialized evaluation, and diagnosis in inpatient and outpatient settings. Through this extensive training program, fellows will accumulate experience and knowledge to practice in academic or private settings.

Subject to the approval of the Director, attendance of one national meeting such as the American Association of Neuromuscular and Electrodiagnostic Medicine, the American Academy of Neurology, or the American Neurological Association is encouraged. A maximum of $1000 is allotted from the Department of Neurology for approved travel and educational expenses, licenses, etc., during the year of training.

To Apply

Application components:

1.    CV

2.    A personal statement that includes:

a.    Reasons for application

b.    Career plans

c.    How the fellowship will promote your career

3.    Letters of recommendation from three faculty references, preferably from their knowledge of your professional abilities. One letter should be from your Neurology Resident Program Director or Department Chair.

Please send your application and reference letters to:

Eroboghene E. Ubogu, MD
Professor of Neurology
Director, Division of Neuromuscular Diseases
Director, EMG and Evoked Potential Laboratory
Director, Shin J. Oh Muscle and Nerve Histopathology Laboratory
Director, Clinical Neurophysiology Fellowship Program
The University of Alabama at Birmingham
Sparks Center 200
1720 2nd Avenue South
Birmingham, AL 35294-0017
P: (205) 934-2188
F: (205) 975-6758


Learn more about the Division of Neuromuscular Disease >>