Department of Surgery

Cardiothoracic Six Year Integrated Residency Program

The University of Rochester 6-Year Integrated Cardiothoracic Surgery Residency Program was approved to begin training in July 2011. The program currently has one first year and one second year resident.

The training program is designed to allow progressive resident responsibility at all levels, commensurate with knowledge and technical ability. Emphasis is placed on academic knowledge and accomplishment as well as clinical expertise in patient care. Graded responsibility under appropriate attending supervision is delegated to residents based on demonstrated capability in order to provide quality patient care.

The first three years of the curriculum are designed to provide broad training in both surgical and medical specialties, including intensive care unit care of post-op CT patients as well as a graduated level of surgical responsibility and patient complexity. The length of the rotations are designed to coincide with the general surgery training program but are assigned to maximize operative experience in general, vascular and CT surgery. A robust curriculum in simulation is utilized to maximize residents’ basic and advanced skill sets in cardiac and thoracic surgery to further accelerate their ability to achieve mastery of techniques to optimize intraoperative performances.

The last three years of training are devoted to the surgical, percutaneous, and minimally invasive treatment of acquired and congenital cardiac disease, thoracic and esophageal disease. The assigned services provide 2000 cases for the residents in all areas of their index case requirements. The rotations are designed so that the residents rotate through cardiac and thoracic surgery each year with progressive responsibility at the senior and finally, chief resident level. In addition, there is a three-month block in the PGY-5 year for the resident to focus on an area of his or her choosing for addition training in either adult cardiac, congenital cardiac or thoracic/esophageal surgery The resident will have exposure to heart transplantation and utilization of ventricular assist devices during this time period as well.

Simulation Course in Cardiac Surgery - CT surgery is developing a national approach to utilize simulation in an organized fashion for resident education. Through the Grateful Donors Program at the University of Rochester Medical Center we have recently purchased a computerized high-fidelity Ramphal pig heart simulator and developed a course to enhance skills for CT residents, general surgery residents and NPs involved in CT critical care.These skill sets are essential for the everyday performance of cardiac surgery and the care of post op patients and simulation represents the most important change in traditional curricula which allows residents and NPS to develop and master new skills outside the pressured environment of the OR or ICU.