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Welcome to the Surgical Elective Programs

Maimonides offers a wide variety of electives through which medical students can rotate to gain a greater understanding of a particular field. All offer daily interaction with renowned surgeons in that specialty, as well as attending staff, residents, and fellows, culminating in a full evaluation after the internship.

Our surgical electives

Breast surgery

This elective introduces 4th-year medical students to the surgical management of breast cancer. Students gain experience in learning about the natural history, diagnosis, pretreatment evaluation, and surgical management of breast cancer. There are opportunities to attend clinical conferences, journal club, and other seminars as well as participating in the operating room, clinic, and office hours. Also, students are exposed to clinical and basic science research related to breast diseases.

Cardiothoracic surgery

Students have the opportunity to integrate principles in cardiovascular physiology and research with observations of cardiovascular surgery. Students are assimilated into the cardiac surgical team. There will be allotted time to work up each patient carefully and to follow that patient through diagnostic studies and surgery, including scrubbing and assisting at surgery. Surgeries may include coronary bypass, valve replacement, complex cardiac, aortic reconstruction, among others. Students will attend all related teaching conferences.

Colorectal surgery

Students will spend 2-4 weeks on the colorectal service to develop skills in surgical and medical problem solving, evaluating patients with benign and malignant disease, operative techniques, clinical research, and tumor immunotherapy. Students participate in the preoperative, operative, and postoperative care of colorectal patients.

Students develop a working understanding of a wide range of colon, rectal, and anal surgical maladies, and learn robotic and laparoscopic surgical approaches to benign and malignant disease. There is a robust clinical simulation laboratory, led by Dr. Rebecca Rhee, including colonoscopy simulation and upper GI simulation. The students spend 1 hour each week at a multidisciplinary tumor board.

Emergency general surgery (EGS)/trauma

EGS is the term used to designate the operative and medical management of the acutely ill or injured patients coming to the hospital with unscheduled insults from a variety of mechanisms, including trauma, burns, acute conditions in the abdomen, or necrotizing soft tissue infections.

Students have the opportunity to participate in the evaluation of patients with complex pathophysiology, initiate multilevel therapeutic and diagnostic interventions, and coordinate multi-specialty consultations. Students are exposed to challenging operative experiences and participate in postoperative care, and partake in weekly clinic and private outpatient experiences, as well as a broad didactic educational component.

General thoracic surgery

Students will become familiar with the workup and management of a variety of benign and malignant thoracic diseases. They will also acquire skills in a variety of technical procedures, including placement and management of thoracostomy tubes, and improve their ability to read and interpret chest x-rays.

Students have the opportunity to work closely with preceptors in the inpatient and outpatient settings, as well as a member of the surgical team in a primary role, contributing to the solution of problems that come up daily in the management of complex patients. Students regularly present patients at weekly tumor boards and attend all associated teaching conferences.

Pediatric surgery

This elective provides experience with differential diagnosis of neonatal surgical emergencies and the medical and surgical management of the more common problems of pediatric and adolescent patients, including the care of children with malignant tumors and trauma victims. Students are also exposed to a full range of endoscopic, laparoscopic, and thoracoscopic surgical procedures.

The pediatric surgery elective allows students to participate in the evaluation of all patients, attend ward rounds, teaching conferences, and consultations, and assist and observe in the operating room. At all times, students are supervised by the pediatric surgery resident as well as the surgical attending staff.

Surgical intensive care unit

Students spend time in the surgical intensive care unit (SICU). Under the supervision of the ICU attendings and residents from the Departments of Anesthesia and Surgery, students share the responsibility for direct day-to-day patient care.

As integral members of the SICU team, students develop the skills of analysis and judgment in the optimal management of complex critically ill surgical patients. Rounds are held once daily with ICU attendings during which patients and their laboratory and x-ray findings are carefully analyzed, and plans are made to clarify and resolve management problems. Students also take calls once per week.

Urologic surgery

The urology rotation encompasses multiple facets of surgical learning, in-house patient management, and weekly clinic and private outpatient experiences. Students are integrated into the urology surgical team. They will be allotted time to work up each patient carefully and to follow that patient through diagnostic studies and surgery, including scrubbing and assisting in laparoscopic and robotic surgery. Students attend all related teaching conferences, such as the weekly patient-centered tumor conference.

Vascular surgery

Students will serve as an integral part of the Vascular Surgery Service and will have patient care responsibilities such as patient history and physical exams, daily management of medical and surgical problems, and interaction with consulting services. Private office hours of the attending surgeons provide outpatient experience. Operating room exposure is significant with hands-on experience during procedures such as carotid artery surgery, aortic aneurysm repair, endovascular surgery, hemodialysis access, and lower extremity bypass surgery.

The future of medical care is you

Maimonides’ Surgical Elective Programs provide superior educational experiences in an environment that assures a balance between academic and clinical activities. We take great pride in our success in preparing interns to become the next generation of expert surgeons.

Apply to the Surgical Elective Program today!