After graduating from medical school, students who are interested in a career in anesthesiology must complete four years of residency, three of which are focused on a specific type of clinical anesthesiology. The American Society of Anesthesiologists states that after residency, many anesthesiologists complete an additional fellowship year of training in one subspecialty area, such as pain management, cardiac or obstetric anesthesiology. Medical schools across the country offer specialized programs to help students train for careers in anesthesiology.
Pain Management Anesthesia
The University of Texas Southwestern Medical Center has one of the six largest pain management residency programs in the country. In the residency program, students can expect to participate in more than 500 procedures a year, and in the fellowship program, students have the opportunity to focus on acute, chronic and cancer pain management. At the University Of Maryland School Of Medicine, three fellows are admitted each year and can train in either chronic or adult and pediatric pain management. Fellows can participate in research, study medication management and oncologic-related pain and gain hands-on experience at the University’s hospital.
Wake Forest University School of Medicine offers a cardiothoracic anesthesiology fellowship program, led by nine faculty members who have expertise in transesophageal echocardiography. Students can also gain experience in providing anesthesia for cardiac procedures, such as valve replacement, and non-cardiac procedures, such as robotic thoracic surgery. At Stanford University School of Medicine, the residency program prepares students for managing anesthesia in complex situations, such as heart-lung transplants, and the fellowship program prepares students for more specialized areas, such as pediatric cardiac anesthesia.
Students in the University of Virginia School of Medicine anesthesia residency program can participate in obstetric anesthesia rotations. This program is designed to train residents to master the technical aspects of anesthesia and to provide quality care to pregnant patients. Vanderbilt School of Medicine offers an obstetric fellowship program that provides students with practice in both high- and low-risk care. In addition, the program offers specialized experience in fetal surgery.
Finding the Program for You
To help narrow the search in finding schools that offer the best residency and fellowship programs in anesthesiology, students should focus on their particular areas of interest. Each type of anesthesiology requires different skills that are unique to that specific area. Attending medical schools that offer area-specific research and clinical practice in specialized areas of anesthesia is essential to a proper preparation for a career in anesthesia.
- American Society of Anesthesiologists: How to Prepare for a Career in Anesthesiology
- UT Southwestern Medical Center: Department of Anesthesiology and Pain Management
- University of Maryland School of Medicine: Anesthesiology Fellowship Programs
- Wake Forest School of Medicine: Cardiothoracic Anesthesiology (CT) Fellowship
- Stanford School of Medicine: Cardiovascular & Thoracic Anesthesia
- University of Virginia School of Medicine: Obstetric Anesthesia Rotation
- Vanderbilt School of Medicine: Anesthesiology
- BananaStock/BananaStock/Getty Images