Plastic Surgery Residency Curriculum
First-year plastic surgery residents spend the majority of the year rotating on general surgery services, including colorectal surgery, trauma surgery, emergency general surgery, pediatric surgery, transplant surgery and general surgery night float. The plastic surgery experience consists of time spent at the Richard L. Roudebush VA Medical Center concentrating on fundamentals of technique in the clinic procedure room. This includes local anesthesia, nerve blocks, skin cancer excisions and simple-to-complex reconstruction of these defects, as well as some minor hand procedures.
The second year of plastic surgery residency training focuses on intensive care unit management of patients and increased operative exposure. Residents spend time working alongside faculty surgeons at the Richard M. Fairbanks Burn Center at Sidney and Lois Eskenazi Hospital, managing patients within the unit as well as participating in excision and grafting in the operating room. Residents also spend one month in the surgical intensive care unit (SICU) and additional months in plastic surgery at Richard L. Roudebush VA Medical Center to further technical skills and clinical management of patients. General surgery exposure during the PGY 2 year includes vascular surgery and night float. Affiliated rotations include one month of dermatology and one month of ear, nose and throat (ENT).
By the third year, residents have completed their general surgery rotations and are now focusing on other specialties, including breast surgery, ENT, orthopedic surgery, anesthesia, SICU and general surgery night float. PGY3 residents spend two months at the Richard M. Fairbanks Burn Center as well as time on the plastic surgery services at the Richard L. Roudebush VA Medical Center.
Upon reaching the fourth year, residents are wholly committed to plastic surgery training. Residents entering the independent track merge with the integrated residents, and no differences in training structure or responsibility exist for the two groups in the final three years. These residents spend several months at Richard L. Roudebush VA Medical Center functioning as primary surgeons in hand cases, complex reconstructions and wound management. Trainees spend two months at the Richard M. Fairbanks Burn Center at Eskenazi Health as the senior resident focusing on complex burn reconstruction and acute burn management. Rotations include time spent on the plastic surgery services at Riley Hospital for Children and IU Health Methodist Hospital. A one-month aesthetic experience is provided at the cosmetic practice with IU Health-affiliated surgeons who participate in educational conferences and other aspects of the program.
The fifth year of residency includes time at Sidney and Lois Eskenazi Hospital participating in lower extremity reconstruction, facial trauma, hand surgery and general plastic surgery. Residents spend several months at the Indiana Hand Center participating in all aspects of upper extremity surgery—both elective and traumatic. At IU Health Methodist Hospital, residents gain experience in general plastic surgery as well as free-flap reconstructions, including DIEP flaps. The PGY 5 year also includes time on the plastic surgery services at IU Health University Hospital and Sidney and Lois Eskenazi Hospital as well as time in cosmetic practice with IU Health-affiliated surgeons.
Senior/chief residents spend time in plastic surgery at Sidney and Lois Eskenazi Hospital, IU Health University Hospital, IU Health Methodist Hospital, and dedicated time in a cosmetic plastic surgery setting. Training during this final year encompasses the breadth of plastic surgery, including substantial microsurgical experience. Senior/chief residents also share time to serve as administrative chief.