Orthopaedic Surgery

Sam W. Wiesel, MD, Chair

The Department of Orthopaedic Surgery conducts clerkships for both third- and fourth-year medical students. The two-week clinical clerkship during the student's third year exposes clerks to orthopaedic surgery as it is practiced in the private attending's office, hospital wards, and emergency and operating rooms. In addition, a core lecture series covers pertinent topics of general and regional orthopaedics. An effort is made to present material of practical use to any physician who will regularly be called upon to deal with musculoskeletal problems. Clinical conferences during the two-week period encourage the student to use his or her newly acquired knowledge while discussing actual current cases. 

Two senior-level clerkships are offered by the department. The first is a four-week intensive, hospital-based, acting internship conducted at Georgetown Hospital and Fairfax Hospital. The student functions as an integral member of the team providing care on the wards and in the emergency and operating rooms. This particular experience is designed for students considering a career in orthopaedic surgery and who are interested in expanding their knowledge of the field and preparing for the application process. An attempt is made to expose the student to the subspecialty areas of orthopaedics including joint replacement, sports medicine, trauma, pediatric orthopaedics, hand, spine, and, to some degree, the basic sciences. During the one-month clerkship the students are evaluated throughout a rigorous program of clinical conferences, case and paper presentations, and resident rounds. 

The other clerkship experience for senior students meets the needs of students seeking a familiarity with the musculoskeletal system, its afflictions, and their management. The clerkship, Musculoskeletal Management, is offered during the second half of the academic year to students not seeking orthopaedic surgery careers and exposes students to office orthopaedics, office rheumatology, and physical medicine and rehabilitation. The schedule's flexibility allows the individual to concentrate on specific areas of interest. Required reading is assigned.