General Surgery Residency

Program Details

Our education program is designed to reflect the American Council on Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) six core competencies: patient care, medical knowledge, practice-based learning and improvement, interpersonal and communication skills, professionalism, and systems-based practice. Resident evaluation is based on the ACGME General Surgery Milestones which incorporate the six core competencies.

Our program draws on the unique strengths of its integrated hospitals to provide breadth and excellence in clinical teaching at the bedside, in the operating room coupled with structured educational conferences and a comprehensive curriculum based in the simulation lab and our robotic/laparoscopic skills lab.

Clinical Rotations

Through the five year General Surgery Residency program, our residents rotate through these Surgical Specialties:

  • Colorectal Surgery
  • Surgical Endoscopy
  • Surgical Oncology
  • Breast Surgery
  • Pediatric Surgery
  • Transplant Surgery
  • Vascular Surgery
  • Cardiothoracic Surgery
  • Surgical Intensive Care Unit
  • Trauma Surgery
  • General Surgery

Click here to view a sample rotation.

Didactic Conferences

Our program follows (SCORE) curriculum which is in conjunction with the weekly lecture schedule. The Wednesday morning conference is structured to cover the surgical curriculum yet remains varied to address all areas of surgical education including critical appraisal of current literature as well as surgical case studies.  The monthly Journal Club is part of the lecture schedule to address critical review of literature. Our Clinical Correlations Conference affords the resident to present interesting surgical cases they have participated in to the Department of Surgery with the guidance of his/her Attending faculty member.  This allows the resident experience in preparing and presenting topics in a public but comfortable venue.

Juniors Club is an attending supervised and proctored interactive format in which surgical patients/cases are presented to the junior level residents to discuss and manage.  This is a way to promote independent thinking and decision making by junior level residents while also learning about pertinent surgical topics.

In addition to the weekly Wednesday conference attended by all residents, the surgical services at the different hospital sites may have separate teaching conferences, tumor board and morbidity and mortality conferences that the residents attend.

Chief Club and Mock Oral Boards

A monthly Chiefs Club occurs at a faculty member’s home where the fourth and fifth year residents are able to practice the oral board format.  Each month a different subject is presented and the residents are able to practice oral boards in a “mock oral” format.  This is in preparation for a city wide surgical residency formal Mock Oral Board Exam that is conducted by several of the residency programs in the city.  This format allows for resident participation in a simulation of the actual exam complete with formal feedback and explanation of questions and answers.  The chief residents have found this exercise to be extremely helpful in preparation for the General Surgery Board exam.

Research Opportunities

A secondary goal of the program is to provide residents with the tools and mentorship necessary to foster their growth as future leaders in surgery. Our program is structured to permit trainees interested in academic surgery to spend additional years in research.

Marek Hansdorfer (2017-Current)

Dr. Hansdorfer’s Research Project Description: I have been conducting translational basic science research in several areas of surgery in the lab. I am currently looking into mechanisms which to seal colonic perforations utilizing novel colonic patching materials sealed with laser-induced photoactive dye. We are also investigating improving outcomes in colonic anastomotic leaks in a trauma model in swine (funded by Department of Defense). By performing a 40% hemorrhage in swine, we are able to recapitulate the conditions of field combat trauma by inducing severe hypotension, we are then comparing multiple methods of reinforcing colonic anastomoses with novel patch materials (compared to standard of care hand-sewn anastomosis) and evaluating sealing strength, formation of adhesions, and clinical outcomes. I am additionally leading another Department of Defense-funded study in non-human primates (Rhesus Macaques) investigating methods to improve outcomes of large-gap peripheral nerve repair. In patients with traumatic amputations (e.g. combat veterans or civilian victims of the Boston Marathon bombing), donor saphenous nerve is not available, and we are currently looking into improving nerve regeneration and functional outcomes in these patients with severely limited function and quality of life.

David Sigmon (2018-Current)

Dr. Sigmon’s Research Project Description: I am the surgical simulation & education fellow during my research year. I am currently researching the effects of in situ OR simulation to increase team performance with high fidelity scenarios. I am also conducting chart review for clinical science projects and getting a Master’s Degree in Medical Education.

Andrew Tully (2018-Current)

Dr. Tully’s Research Project Description: The human costs of limb amputation are enormous. Persons with amputated limbs number over 1.6 million in the United States and 227,000 in Canada; China is beginning to see an epidemic of diabetes with an estimated 13.9 million currently diabetic and 493.4 million with prediabetes. Bombings, earthquakes, motor vehicle accidents, and armed conflicts produce many new traumatic amputations each year. Since 1999, limb transplant has held widely applicable therapeutic promise, largely unfulfilled. Although economic considerations also keep limb transplant out of reach for most candidates, the two main road blocks remain limited neurologic recovery and substantial sustained immunosuppression resulting in adverse outcomes. Andy Tully is working with the Northwestern University Limb Transplant Research Group in a rat model of limb transplant to overcome these obstacles and expand access to these therapies.​

Posters, Publications, and Presentations

Residents in our program have the opportunity to publish and present their work at conferences. Here are a few examples of some of the work from the residents throughout their journey in this residency program.

Click here for a listing of posters, publications, and presentations.