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Transplant Nephrology Fellowship Program

The Transplant Nephrology Program at IU School of Medicine, a one-year program accredited by the American Society of Transplantation, is designed to produce qualified transplant nephrologists in all aspects of transplant medicine, which includes understanding and applying innovating immunosuppression regimens and applying research experience and outcomes in the field of solid-organ transplantation.

Clinical Settings

Fellows within the program train alongside faculty physicians at the IU Health Transplant Center, staffed by a multidisciplinary kidney transplant team that includes skilled transplant surgeons, nurse coordinators, anesthesiologists, pharmacologists, fellow nephrologists, interventional radiologists, pathologists, dieticians, social workers, psychologists, nursing staff, chaplains, administrative staff and financial counselors. Throughout training, fellows are primarily located at the IU Health University Hospital Organ Transplant Unit (Indianapolis) while also covering transplant-related issues, if needed, at other clinical sites on the IU School of Medicine—Indianapolis campus.

Transplant fellows share on-call responsibilities with the rotating nephrology fellow. They take calls from residents for any medical or renal problems. One faculty member is always on call and available to guide fellows, as needed.

Patient Care

Approximately 150-200 transplant kidney biopsies are performed every year on the IU School of Medicine—Indianapolis campus. Transplant fellows alternate with the rotating nephrology fellow for biopsies throughout the year to perform a minimum of 30 transplant biopsies. The transplant fellow is well-experienced and can independently perform transplant kidney biopsies mid-way through their fellowship year and generally perform more than 35 biopsies during the training period.

Transplant nephrology fellows learn to manage a minimum of 30 new patients with kidney and/or KP transplant and follow them for at least three months. Fellows also observe five cadaveric and five living-donor kidney transplants and observe three organ harvests. Before completing this program, fellows conduct a minimum of 30 pre-transplant recipient evaluations and 20 living-donor evaluations.

The fellow is involved in primary decision-making in all aspects of clinical care, including immunosuppression. Throughout the training period, fellows are extensively trained and become proficient in managing acute and chronic transplant rejections, transplant-related infectious diseases (including BK Virus Nephropathy and CMV), transplant-related malignancies (including PTLD and skin cancers), and immunosuppressive regimens, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, hypertension, metabolic bone disease, anemia and chronic allograft nephropathy—in both inpatient and outpatient settings.

Comprehensive clinical experience is also acquired in managing patients with both stable and complicated courses, who have received kidney-pancreas transplants, liver transplants with renal complications, and liver-kidney transplants.

Teaching and Didactics

Transplant nephrology fellows are involved in teaching and guiding first-year categorical nephrology fellows.

Lectures are provided by basic and clinical scientists on immunology, pharmacology, obstetrics, metabolic bone disease and infectious disease topics along with sessions on post-operative and maintenance transplant care. In addition, fellows attend weekly acute transplant clinics and chronic kidney and kidney/pancreas transplant clinics as well as a biweekly pre-transplant donor and recipient evaluation clinic.

Research Experience

The transplant fellow is strongly encouraged to pursue clinical/translational research leading to at least one publication or national presentation.

Application Requirements

Applicants must have completed a two-year nephrology fellowship program and be board-eligible. A completed application and curriculum vita is required as well as a personal statement, and four letters of recommendation (one of which must be from the applicant’s fellowship director). Applicants must also submit a copy of medical school diploma and medical school transcripts and a copy of ECFMG certificate (if International Medical Graduate) and documentation of prior GME training in nephrology.