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Retinal Programs

cpw

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    I work with a retinal surgeon right now (who's a fairly recent grad).. I'll ask him his opinion on good fellowships. :) I know he did a fellowship in a one year program instead of a two year. The patient load was so high it was only for one year.
     

    Andrew_Doan

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      cancer_doc said:
      My friend is a resident in opthalmology and is interested in Retinal surgery. Can anyone tell me where are the top programs? Are there any good pediatric retinal programs, too?

      Thanks

      In no particular order:

      Bascom Palmer, Wilmer, Wills, Iowa, Duke, USC, Jules Stein, Oregon, and Michigan.
       
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      Retinamark

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      1. Fellow [Any Field]
        cancer_doc said:
        Besides U Mich, are there any other good programs in Michigan and it's neighboring states: Illinois, Indiana, Ohio, Pennsylvania, or Wisconsin?

        thanks

        There are great retina programs in the above states at:

        U Chicago - Bill Mieler's program

        Rush University / Illinois Retina Associates - Kirk Packo, David Chow et al

        Wills Eye Hosp in Philadelphia is probably the best retina fellowship in the country (in my humble opinion)

        Other programs I have heard are very good, but I didn't interview at are:
        Cleveland Clinic
        Kresge in Detroit
        William Beaumont
        Royal Oak / Associated Retina Consultants

        You can see a detailed list at www.sfmatch.org
         

        jjfuller72

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          cancer_doc said:
          My friend is a resident in opthalmology and is interested in Retinal surgery. Can anyone tell me where are the top programs? Are there any good pediatric retinal programs, too?

          Thanks

          Don't leave out Barnes (@ Wash U in St. Louis), Emory, and Tufts. All solid top 10 programs.
           

          modemduck

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            jjfuller72 said:
            Don't leave out Barnes (@ Wash U in St. Louis), Emory, and Tufts. All solid top 10 programs.

            What sort of things do they base acceptance to retinal fellowship on?
            ophtho residency, LOR, board score, medschool, interview, research??

            Oh and what percentage of ophtho applicants get into retina?

            thanks in advance,
            ra
             

            demspawn

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              For some reason everyone has left out MEEI.
              THey seem to have on of the best retina teams in the US...
              Check out their research and their names and credentials.
              I would expect people to be naming them before any other program.

              As for Wills Eye, I know they have an excellent Glaucoma Fellowship...

              D
               

              jjfuller72

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                demspawn said:
                For some reason everyone has left out MEEI.
                THey seem to have on of the best retina teams in the US...
                Check out their research and their names and credentials.
                I would expect people to be naming them before any other program.

                As for Wills Eye, I know they have an excellent Glaucoma Fellowship...

                D

                MEEI is not a top flight surgical retina fellowship anymore by most people's estimation. When Ophthalmic Consultants of Boston (the largest Ophthalmic private practice in the nation) changed their affiliation from MEEI to Tufts a few years ago, it pretty much killed the surgical experience for the MEEI fellows. It may be the perfect program for someone big on basic science and dead set on a academic career, but it is surgically weaker than the ones mentioned above. Actually, Wilmer is also weaker on the surgical side, but not to the extent that MEEI is. However, I agree with you that the names, credentials of the people at MEEI (& Wilmer) are astounding, though that doesn't necessarily translate into good fellowship training.
                 

                jjfuller72

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                  modemduck said:
                  What sort of things do they base acceptance to retinal fellowship on?
                  ophtho residency, LOR, board score, medschool, interview, research??

                  Oh and what percentage of ophtho applicants get into retina?

                  thanks in advance,
                  ra

                  The best advice I received on trying to get a good fellowship was to be the best resident I could be. I've applied that advice, and gone from barely getting a spot in ophtho at a lower-tier institution (only 6 interview offers from 40 applications) to probably matching at a top-5 retina fellowship spot (I got 23 retina interview offers from 27 applications.)--I'll hear this Friday!! A lot of it depends on your letters and calls (hopefully by someone who likes you a lot and is a well-respected retina doc) to get the interviews. Research publications (especially first author papers in clinical ophthalmic journals) and presentations go a long way as well. I would say that the boards, medschool, OKAPs are of lesser importance, as mine aren't on par with most ophtho folks.

                  Most people who want to do retina will match. In 2003, 71 of 114 participants matched and in 2004, 73 of 99 participants matched. There are always some spots that go unfilled, but these are usually medical retina, research related, or just plain bad fellowships. It's not too hard to match in retina, but, because there are around 100+ applicants each year, it's pretty tough to get the coveted spots.
                   

                  jjfuller72

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                    Retinamark said:
                    There are great retina programs in the above states at:

                    U Chicago - Bill Mieler's program

                    Rush University / Illinois Retina Associates - Kirk Packo, David Chow et al

                    Wills Eye Hosp in Philadelphia is probably the best retina fellowship in the country (in my humble opinion)

                    Other programs I have heard are very good, but I didn't interview at are:
                    Cleveland Clinic
                    Kresge in Detroit
                    William Beaumont
                    Royal Oak / Associated Retina Consultants

                    You can see a detailed list at www.sfmatch.org

                    Mark,

                    I agree that Beaumont/Royal Oak is a top 5 surgical fellowship.

                    Kresge is a solid top-10 academic program.

                    I didn't like Cleveland clinic all that much (only 3 attending for two fellows, and two of the attendings are apparently pretty tough to work with)

                    Rush has one of the best faculty in the nation, but their structure with driving to so many different locations seemed to be a big drawback.

                    The jury is still out on U Chicago with Meiler as it is a brand new fellowship.

                    Agree that Will's is top-flight. Others might argue that Barnes, or Duke, or Beaumont, or USC, or Bascom (cheif track) are the best programs, but at that level, it's all a matter of opinion.
                     

                    speyeder

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                      Just wondering if anyone had any opinions on the retina programs in New York, specifically NYEEI & Columbia. How do they compare to the other programs already mentioned? Are either of these top 10 programs?
                       

                      modemduck

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                        jjfuller72 said:
                        The best advice I received on trying to get a good fellowship was to be the best resident I could be. I've applied that advice, and gone from barely getting a spot in ophtho at a lower-tier institution (only 6 interview offers from 40 applications) to probably matching at a top-5 retina fellowship spot (I got 23 retina interview offers from 27 applications.)--I'll hear this Friday!! A lot of it depends on your letters and calls (hopefully by someone who likes you a lot and is a well-respected retina doc) to get the interviews. Research publications (especially first author papers in clinical ophthalmic journals) and presentations go a long way as well. I would say that the boards, medschool, OKAPs are of lesser importance, as mine aren't on par with most ophtho folks.

                        Most people who want to do retina will match. In 2003, 71 of 114 participants matched and in 2004, 73 of 99 participants matched. There are always some spots that go unfilled, but these are usually medical retina, research related, or just plain bad fellowships. It's not too hard to match in retina, but, because there are around 100+ applicants each year, it's pretty tough to get the coveted spots.

                        JJ,
                        Thanks for the help, it seemed like retina was insanely competitive but I guess that isn't so unless you want those "coveted" spots. I will make sure to talk to our retinal specialist here @ columbia; it is funny how the further you go in your training the more your connections matter and the less test scores etc. are significant.

                        Good luck matching, where are you at for residency and where would you like to go for fellowship training? thanks!

                        - ra
                         

                        Retinamark

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                        1. Fellow [Any Field]
                          speyeder said:
                          Just wondering if anyone had any opinions on the retina programs in New York, specifically NYEEI & Columbia. How do they compare to the other programs already mentioned? Are either of these top 10 programs?
                          There are 4 retina fellowships in New York.
                          1. Columbia / Manhattan Eye & Ear
                          - 2 yrs
                          - 1st 6 months medical retina with Yanuzzi et al, then 1 year surgical with Stanley Chang, then final 6 months medical retina back with Yanuzzi. This is a really good program from what I've heard.

                          2. New York Eye & Ear
                          - 2 yrs
                          - very busy surgically
                          - great new refurbished retina clinic with all the latest toys. You can do a virtual tour on their website. Great bunch of attendings.

                          3. Cornell
                          - 2 yrs
                          - also great attendings - all really friendly
                          - not as busy surgically as the others
                          - great location, upper east side
                          - nice modern offices with all the latest toys

                          4. NYU
                          - medical retina
                          - I don't know much about this one, as I didn't interview here

                          As for whether they are top 10 or not, I can't say. That is a very subjective thing. Some people might include Columbia &/or NYEE in their top 10 list, but others may not. It depends what is more important to you. There are programs that would rank top 10 in terms of reputation / prestige, but would not rank top 10 in terms of surgical load / quality of the fellowship and vice versa.

                          Cornell would be a fantastic fellowship & I was really impressed, but I don't think anyone would include it in the top 10.
                           

                          Retinamark

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                          1. Fellow [Any Field]
                            jjfuller72 said:
                            I didn't like Cleveland clinic all that much (only 3 attending for two fellows, and two of the attendings are apparently pretty tough to work with)
                            I didn't interview there, but have heard the same thing from a few different people. One of my attendings who did his fellowship there, told me it was great back then, but he wouldn't want to go there now.

                            jjfuller72 said:
                            Rush has one of the best faculty in the nation, but their structure with driving to so many different locations seemed to be a big drawback.
                            I totally agree. The driving would definitely be a big problem. The fellowship really looked awesome in terms of the quality of the training & surgical load & there are some fantastic attendings there, but driving an hour per day in Chicago traffic would be a big downside.
                            (Overall though, for anyone considering applying there, I would highly recommend this program & I would have definitely put up with the driving to work there.)
                             

                            PDT4CNV

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                            1. Fellow [Any Field]
                              I would inform your friend to include UAB, they have two big retina groups, Morris/Witherspoon/Kimble/Taylor/Tucker/Kuhn and Mason/White/Feist/Thomely. Both groups offer fellowships for a total of 6-8 retina fellows at any given time at the Eye Foundation Hospital at UAB. There is truly a lot of pioneering work done there and high surgical volume.
                               
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