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Clinical Rotations

The two-year surgical oncology fellowship was designed to provide young surgeons with the tools and resources necessary to conduct independent research and provide cutting-edge cancer care to patients. It is the dedication to improving the lives of our patients that makes physicians unique, and we firmly believe that surgical oncologists lead this charge. Following the completion of an initial 4-month period of intense basic science research, each fellow rotates through the three ACGME required rotations in medical oncology, radiation oncology, and surgical pathology. The purpose of these rotations is to provide intense exposure of the surgical fellow to the disciplines of oncology that he or she will work with during the multidisciplinary care of patients. When properly assembled, the multidisciplinary oncology team affords each patient with the best chances for a satisfactory outcome. Having each fellow rotate through these disciplines expands their repertoire, teaches them about the utilities of various chemotherapeutic agents and radiation techniques, and exposes them to the diagnostic challenges posed to the pathologist.

McMasters with StudentsThe remaining portion of the first year is relegated to elective rotations, which consist of Thoracic Surgery, Colorectal, Gynecologic Oncology, ERCP/Endoscopy, Transplantation, and Head & Neck Surgery.

The second year of the fellowship consists of block rotations in the core general surgical oncology disciplines. Each block is designed to pair one fellow with one attending. This close relationship is unique among the surgical oncology fellowships, and it fosters a life-long relationship between the fellow and attending.

The experience gained on each rotation is unique. While on Dr. Martin's service, the fellow will be exposed to a vast array of gastrointestinal, hepatic, pancreatic, and esophageal cancers. Dr. Quillo specializes in endocrine tumors and Dr. Ajkay specializes in breast tumors. While on Dr. McMasters' service, the fellow will participate in the melanoma clinic, as well as operate on a vast array of GI and hepatobiliary cancer patients. Dr. Scoggins' and Dr. Philip’s services will provide the fellow with additional experience with liver and pancreatic cancers, GI cancers, melanoma, and sarcoma.

Since the fellow is paired with one attending, the fellow's day mirrors the attending's activities. If the attending is in clinic, so is the fellow. When operating, the fellow is doing the case. Attending research and academic days are also the fellow's research and academic days. This system instills excellence in each fellow and is the core of the fellowship.