Sports fellowships with the best spine training?

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klumpke

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Per the title does anyone have any recs on which sports fellowship programs have good numbers for basic spine procedures?

Also maybe which to avoid (obviously primary care based programs).

Thanks in advance!

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I will let others chime in, but I had heard that many sports medicine fellowships that previously offered spine procedures are not anymore as the new NASS Interventional Spine and Musculoskeletal Medicine fellowships at the same institutions typically provide that aspect (ex. Emory). PM&R-based sports medicine fellowships are much more likely to offer spine procedures, but historically some primary care-based programs, such as University of Utah (SLC, UT) and JPS (Fort Worth, TX), did offer some fluoroscopic interventional spine training to fellows as well. I am not sure on the current status.
 
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Anyone that has a PM&R-designated spot usually has either built-in or availability for spine procedures (almost all PM&R programs (sans Mayo), + FM-based programs with PM&R slots like Utah, Cleveland Clinic, Swedish). Be very cautious with any of the programs that are FM based and have FM-sports docs teaching you spine procedures - on further digging that usually ends up being basically caudal ESI injections and maybe MBB, which are easy but not going to set you apart in the spine world at all if you cant get high volume TFESI to be competent in that at a bare minimum. This would be programs like Boise and JPS. If you are FM trained going into sports that is an insane amount of info to learn (sports, ultrasound, fracture care, etc) to also learn interventional spine and be good at all of it. Only know of really 1 or 2 that have done that successfully, and one did a pain fellowship afterwards to solidify it. (not sure if that is you)
 
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I interviewed with WashU who has both an ACGME-accredited PM&R sports medicine spot as well as a NASS spot. Both fellows get substantial experience with interventional spine. However, I also echo the above that most PM&R designated spots will at any institution will most likely have some spine exposure to those who seek it.
 
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Recently had an interview with DMC and they offer a lot of spine for a PM&R Fellow. One full day a week of continuity clinic with PM&R pain docs doing Lumbar and cervical procedures and opportunities for PNS and other procedures as well. I know Rush website says they offer fluoro as well but not sure what extent. PM&R based programs or programs where you know a PM&R trained doc teaches fluoro are probably safest bets like others above said.
 
Just a consideration for those thinking about sports medicine. You only have 5 days (10 half days) in a work week. If you want to be good and stay good at something, you want to make sure you are doing it enough to keep it up. This goes for spine procedures, ultrasound-guided procedures, EMG, whatever. If you want to do spine procedures, you will need to likely see neck and low back pain patients in clinic to generate procedures. The more you do of that, the less you do of true sports (essentially all joints outside of the spine). Your practice will become what you see. Great advice I once heard is that if you want to be a sports physician but offer spine procedures, more than likely your practice will fill up more and more with neck and back pain. Just ask yourself if you want to be a sports physician, a spine physician or a pain physician, and then devote your time to what you want to be.
 
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Just a consideration for those thinking about sports medicine. You only have 5 days (10 half days) in a work week. If you want to be good and stay good at something, you want to make sure you are doing it enough to keep it up. This goes for spine procedures, ultrasound-guided procedures, EMG, whatever. If you want to do spine procedures, you will need to likely see neck and low back pain patients in clinic to generate procedures. The more you do of that, the less you do of true sports (essentially all joints outside of the spine). Your practice will become what you see. Great advice I once heard is that if you want to be a sports physician but offer spine procedures, more than likely your practice will fill up more and more with neck and back pain. Just ask yourself if you want to be a sports physician, a spine physician or a pain physician, and then devote your time to what you want to be.
Couldn’t agree more. I honestly never understood Sports/Spine fellowships. There’s no way you could convince me that cutting something in half gives you a whole. You don’t need a Sports fellowship to do ultrasound. Just do a Pain fellowship that incorporates ultrasound, which many of them do. If you want to do high level sports coverage, just do a sports fellowship. If you do want to stick needles in someone’s spine for a living…you really want to do a Pain fellowship. The liability is too high to not dedicating the mass majority of your time doing that.
 
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Couldn’t agree more. I honestly never understood Sports/Spine fellowships. There’s no way you could convince me that cutting something in half gives you a whole. You don’t need a Sports fellowship to do ultrasound. Just do a Pain fellowship that incorporates ultrasound, which many of them do. If you want to do high level sports coverage, just do a sports fellowship. If you do want to stick needles in someone’s spine for a living…you really want to do a Pain fellowship. The liability is too high to not dedicating the mass majority of your time doing that.
While I agree, I want to add that in terms of ultrasound, the good sports fellowships emphasize diagnostics. Sports/Spine and Pain will not do that
 
While I agree, I want to add that in terms of ultrasound, the good sports fellowships emphasize diagnostics. Sports/Spine and Pain will not do that
Agreed…if you want to do heavy ultrasound diagnostics or cover division 1/pro sports, you should probably do Sports. I love Sports, and there is a role.

But if you’re content with literally anything else, I’d probably just do a Pain fellowship. I knew lots of folks at Mayo that didn’t find an enormous need for more ultrasound, so they did Pain (especially if your residency is strong at ultrasound or if the Pain fellowship incorporates ultrasound). Now they can do literally anything under the sun procedurally…Fluoro, US, EMG, Botox. You can get credentialed for regen, tenex, and even CTR without Sports. The only things they aren’t doing is heavy diagnostic ultrasound and heavy competitive Sports coverage, but the truth is that I don’t think any of them want to do that anyway. Diagnostic ultrasound is not financially appealing and has relatively high liability, and sports coverage (though fun) doesn’t pay.
 
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