Spine Services

Gain experience with patients who have degenerative, infectious and neoplastic conditions of the spine. 

Our spine services rotation will train you to describe and use classifications of spinal deformities and cervical spine fractures. You’ll learn to problem solve in cases of degenerative disc disease and metastatic spine involvement by initiating investigations and recommending treatment plans.

We’ll instruct you on the natural history of a variety of conditions and the expected effectiveness of treatment recommendations.

By the end of our rotation, you should feel comfortable classifying fractures of the thoracic, cervical and lumbar spine using X-rays.

Diversify Your Skills

As a resident in our program, you can expect to gain skills in areas including:

  • interim stabilization of patients with unstable spinal columns with and without neurologic injury
  • application of halo thoracic device
  • preparing and positioning patients for anterior and posterior spinal procedures
  • anterior and posterior exposures of cervical, thoracic and lumbar spine

With the guidance of our faculty, you’ll learn about fixation of the spine using devices including laminar hooks as well as sublaminar and spinous process wires. We’ll also help you increase your knowledge about the pathogenesis and treatment alternatives for:

  • degenerative disc disease of lumbar spine and cervical spine
  • herniations of nucleus pulposus of lumbar spine
  • infections of spine
  • metastatic diseases of the spine and spinal deformity

Our training will help you enhance your surgical skills in areas such as:

  • posterior exposure of lumbar spine
  • posterior exposure for intertransverse fusion
  • harvesting iliac crest bone graft
  • locate pedicles in lumbar and lower thoracic spine
  • interpreting imaging for degenerative disc disease, fractures, infection, deformity and tumor

Clinical Examination: Develop Your Competence

Our curriculum will help you improve your skills in the clinical examination — including neurological and musculoskeletal assessments — of patients with pain in the arms, neck, back and legs as well as patients with spinal deformity. 

You’ll deepen your understanding of indications for and complications of:

  • posterior lumbar fusion
  • lumbar decompression of herniated disc
  • lumbar decompression of spinal stenosis
  • cervical dissection and fusion
  • treatment of spinal deformity

Variety of Learning Experiences

Our journal club will help you bolster the knowledge you gain during our spine service rotation. 

You’ll also have an opportunity to participate in a cadaver lab, where you’ll deepen your understanding about the placement of thoracic and lumbar pedicle screws.

Length of Rotation

Fourth-year residents: 10 weeks

Patient Population

The patients you see will expose you to spinal pathologies including:

  • adult scoliosis
  • flatback deformity
  • cervical stenosis and myelopathy
  • cervical herniated discs
  • lumbar spinal stenosis
  • lumbar disc herniations

Training Site