Fellowship Program Overview

The UIC Hematology/Oncology Fellowship Program provides the opportunity to gain competence or expertise in the performance and (where applicable) interpretation of the following:

 

    • Bone marrow aspiration and biopsy, including preparation, staining, examination, and interpretation of blood smears, bone marrow aspirates, and touch preparations and interpretation of bone marrow biopsies.
    • Measurement of the complete blood count, including platelets and white cell differential, using automated or manual techniques with appropriate quality control.
    • Administration of chemotherapeutic agents and biological response modifiers through all therapeutic routes.
    • Management and care of indwelling venous access catheters.
    • Therapeutic phlebotomy
    • Therapeutic thoracentesis and paracentesis
    • Pelvic examination
    • Serial measurement of palpable tumor masses
    • Correlation of clinical information with cytology, histology, and imaging techniques

 

The program provides experience in or observation of the following:

 

    • Apheresis procedures
    • Performance and interpretation of partial thromboplastin time, prothrombin time, platelet aggregation, and bleeding time
    • Bone marrow and peripheral stem cell harvest for transplantation
    • Fine needle aspiration and biopsy

 

 

The Fellows receive formal instruction, clinical experience, and opportunities to acquire knowledge in the following:

 

    • Morphology, physiology, and biochemistry of blood, marrow, lymphatic tissue and the spleen
    • Basic molecular and pathophysiologic mechanisms, diagnosis, and therapy of diseases of the blood, including anemias, diseases of white cells, and disorders of hemostasis and thrombosis
    • Etiology, epidemiology, natural history, diagnosis, pathology, staging, and management of neoplastic disorders
    • Immune markers, immunophenotyping, cytochemical studies, and cytogenetic and DNA analysis of neoplastic disorders
    • Molecular mechanisms of neoplasia, including the nature of oncogenes and their products
    • Chemotherapeutic drugs, biologic products, and growth factors and their mechanisms of action, pharmacokinetics, clinical indications, and limitations, including their effects, toxicity, and interactions
    • Multi-agent chemotherapy protocols and combined modality therapy in the treatment of neoplastic disorders
    • Principles and application of surgery and radiation therapy in the treatment of neoplastic disorders
    • Management of the neutropenic and/or immunocompromised patient
    • Effects of systemic disorders, infections, solid tumors, and drugs on the blood, blood-forming organs, and lymphatic tissues
    • Allogeneic and autologous bone marrow transplantation and the nature and management of post-transplant complications
    • Indications and application of imaging techniques in patients with blood and neoplastic disorders
    • Pathophysiology and patterns of solid tumor metastases
    • Principles of gynecologic oncology
    • Pain management in the cancer patient
    • Rehabilitation and psychosocial management of patients with hematologic and neoplastic disorders
    • Hospice and home care for the cancer patient
    • Recognition and management of paraneoplastic disorders
    • The etiology of cancer, including predisposing causal factors leading to neoplasia
    • Cancer prevention and screening
    • Participation in a tumor board
    • Tests of hemostasis and thrombosis for both congenital and acquired disorders and regulation of antithrombotic therapy
    • Treatment of patients with disorders of hemostasis and the biochemistry and pharmacology of coagulation factor replacement
    • Transfusion medicine, including the evaluation of antibodies, blood compatibility, and the use of blood component therapy and apheresis procedures
    • Personal development, attitudes, and coping skills of physicians and other health-care professionals who care for critically ill patients
    • Human immunodeficiency virus-related malignancies  

 

 

Each fellow is provided with discretionary funds to attend national oncology or hematology meetings such as ASCO or ASH, to purchase texts and reference books or other computer-based educational resources, personal digital assistants, or other educational uses each year.  However, should a fellow be selected to present an abstract or paper at one of these meetings, we provide fellows with additional funds.

As stated previously, the inpatient experience is varied and intensive.  The curriculum here at UIC has changed somewhat during the recent years.  We now also include a Blood Bank and coagulation experience as well as a hematology consultation experience at both the Jesse Brown Veterans Affairs Medical Center (JBVAMC) and University of Illinois Hospital (UIH) during the first year.  On all of the inpatient rotations, fellows are expected to take a leadership role in the management of these services.

The outpatient experience is varied and evolving.  We are currently formulating new roles for the fellows particularly within the UIC clinic experience.  For first year fellows, all are expected to attend at least one half-day clinic at the VACHCS-WS each week.  In addition, first year fellows are assigned to another half-day clinic.  At the VACHCS-WS, fellows are expected to be the primary physician for patients.