Epilepsy Fellowship

SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT: Fellowship positions for 2019-2020 are available.

Introduction

The UNC Epilepsy fellowship training program is ACGME accredited program and organized to provide the intellectual environment, formal instruction, peer interaction and broad supervised clinical experience necessary for fellows to master the knowledge, skills and attitudes essential to the practice of epilepsy and to allow progression into a subspecialty practice, research or teaching career in epilepsy. Central to these goals is the fellow’s attainment of the six core competencies in the areas of patient care, medical knowledge, practice-based learning and improvement, interpersonal and communication skills, professionalism, and systems-based practice.

Program Description

 During the Epilepsy fellowship within the Department of Neurology at the University of North Carolina Hospitals, the fellow will:

  •  Serve as an epileptologist under close faculty supervision for inpatient and outpatient care in epilepsy including EMU services (adult and pediatric), outpatient epilepsy specialty clinic, fellow’s longitudinal clinic, and inpatient subspecialty consultation;

  • Interpret EEGs including long-term monitoring and routine/ambulatory EEGs and EPs;

  • Participate in all pre-surgical and surgical evaluation for medically intractable epilepsy such as Phase I evaluation, Epilepsy Surgery Conference Presentation, WADA, intracranial EEG monitoring (known as Phase II), ECOG, and functional mapping;

  • Participate in other clinical neurophysiology such as IOM and sleep study during electives;

  • Teach neurology/neurosurgery residents and medical students rotating through their Epilepsy/EEG rotation;

  • Complete at least one scholarly project and submit at least one abstract to the national meeting. Fellows will have various opportunities to participate in research projects and are encouraged publishing a first author manuscript.

 At the end of the fellowship, fellows will be competent to evaluate and manage patients in the full spectrum of seizure disorder and utilize all diagnostic testing with competency in EEG and EPs. The fellow will be able to take the Epilepsy ABPN board as well as the ABCN clinical neurophysiology board.

Organization of Fellowship Training

Clinical Rotations

The foundation of fellow training is the clinical rotations which are overseen by the Neurology Department faculty.  The fellow works closely with the faculty in both the outpatient and inpatient setting.  This gives the fellow an opportunity to observe directly how to provide compassionate, appropriate, and effective patient care, discuss and demonstrate knowledge about related and relevant health care sciences, learn appropriate communication skills, develop professionalism, and develop an awareness of their relationship with the health care system. The faculty will incorporate these issues into case discussions that serve as the basis for clinical education. 

Procedures

The fellow will develop, with appropriate instruction and feedback, experience in the following procedures:

  •  EEG interpretation
  • Phase I monitoring (presurgical evaluation)
  • Phase II invasive video-EEG
  • Intraoperative electrocorticography
  • Intraoperative and extra-operative cortical electrical stimulation studies for functional mapping
  • Intracarotid amobarbital testing (WADA)
  • Placement of sphenoidal electrodes
  • Programming of vagal nerve stimulators (VNS) and responsive neurostimulator (RNS)
  • Use of ictal/interictal SPECT, interictal PET and MRI techniques in epilepsy surgery, EPs, and polysomnograms (PSGs) and/or IOM.

Conferences

  • Didactic Lectures: Typically 1st and 3rd Tuesdays at 1-2pm, CNP conference room.
  • Didactic Reading: Prior to lectures, fellows are expected to complete the reading assignment with the flipped classroom model.
  • Book Chapter Reading and Topic Discussions: Typically 2nd and 4th Tuesdays at 1-2pm, POB conference room. Fellows are expected to lead this session.
  • Weekly Multidisciplinary Epilepsy Case Conference (MECC): Mondays at 7:30-8:30am, CNP conference room.
  • Bi-weekly Resident EEG Lectures: Tuesdays at 12-1pm, CNP conference room.
  • Epilepsy Journal Club: 2nd and 4th Tuesday at 12-1pm, POB or 6 Neuroscience conference room.
  • Epilepsy Research Meeting: 1st and 3rd Tuesday at 12-1pm, POB or 6 Neuroscience conference room.
  • Neuropathology for Epilepsy Surgical Cases: Typically held for 2-3 times per year on Tuesdays. Further detailed schedule is TBA. The fellow should attend all of these conferences.

Scholarly Activities

Fellows must complete scholarly activities and at least one project during the course of their training. Teaching of residents, medical students, and allied health personnel will be a required part of each fellow’s education in neurology. The fellow will participate in the resident didactic lecture series.

Research and other scholarly activities by fellows supervised by the faculty are required for graduation. The fellow is required to present at least one abstract in the national meeting and strongly encouraged to publish at least one manuscript during the fellowship. The topics can be chosen by fellows in their interest such as quality improvement, EMU safety, epilepsy surgery, diagnostic and therapeutic treatment projects, other clinical projects, transitional research project, and/or basic science research. The fellow is strongly encouraged to identify research mentors by the second month of training. Fellows are required to attend a national meeting during training, funded by travel/book fund and/or travel scholarship, during training. 

Epilepsy Faculty   

Adult Epilepsy:

  • Albert Hinn, MD, Director of CNP and IOM, Professor
  • Hae Won Shin, MD, Medical Director of Epilepsy and Epilepsy Fellowship Program Director, Associate Professor
  • Bradley Vaughn, MD, Chief of Epilepsy and Sleep, Professor
  • Angela Wabulya, MB ChB, Assistant Professor                

 Pediatric Epilepsy:

  • Yael Shiloh-Malawsky, MD, Assistant Director - Epilepsy Fellowship Program, Assistant Professor
  • Paul Carney, MD, Chief of Pediatric Neurology, Professor
  • Ammar Hussain, MD, Assistant Professor
  • Michael Tennison, MD, Professor   

Adjunctive Faculty:

  • Eldad Hadar, MD, Neurosurgery, Surgical Director of Epilepsy Surgery, Vice Chair, Associate Professor
  • Valerie Jewells, MD, Neuroradiology, Associate Professor
  • Karla Thompson, PhD, Neuropsychology, Assistant Professor
  • Matthew Harris, PhD, Neuropsychology, Assistant Professor
  • Jarrett Barnhill, MD, Psychiatry, Professor
  • Nicole Odem, MD, Pinehurst Neurology, Assistant Professor


Current Fellows and Alumni

Epilepsy Fellowship, ACGME Accredited


2019 - 2020

Position available. Currently accepting applications.

2018 - 2019

Slots filled.

2017 - 2018

Matthew McConnell, MD

  • Undergraduate School: Duke University
  • Medical School: Wake Forest University
  • Neurology Residency: University of Virginia, Charlottesville, Virginia

2016 - 2017

None

2015 - 2016

Robin Davis, MD

  • Private practice, academic
  • Oschner Health Care, New Orleans, LA
  • Neurology Residency: University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill

Tiffany Fisher, M.D., PhD

  • Academic practice, Assistant Professor - Neurology and epilepsy
    Penn State University, Hershey, PA
  • Neurology Residency: University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill

2014 - 2015

Fumin Tong, MD, PhD

  • Neurology Residency: Albany Medical Center, SUNY Albany
  • Private Practice, Neurology Group of Bergen County, NJ

Clinical Neurophysiology Fellowship Alumni


2012 - 2013

Zachary Potter, MD

  • Neurology Residency: University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill
  • Private Practice, Kernodle Clinic, Greensboro, NC

Yael Shiloh-Malawsky, MD

  • Neurology Residency: University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill
  • Academic Practice, Assistant Professor, Child Neurology and Epilepsy
    University of North Carolina - Chapel Hill, NC

2009 - 2010

Chon Lee, MD

  • Neurology Residency: University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill
  • Academic Practice, Assistant Professor
    Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center,
    Winston-Salem, NC

2008 - 2009

Stuart Busby, MD

  • Neurology Residency: Emory University
  • Private Practice, Ochsner Baptist, New Orleans, LA 

2007 - 2008

Alan Schulman, MD

  • Neurology Residency: University of Virginia Medical Center, Charlottesville, VA
  • Private Practice, Neurological Associates, Richmond, VA

Fellowship Eligibility

The epilepsy fellows must meet all of the following requirements.

  • Be a graduate of an accredited medical school in the United States or Canada, or of an international medical school listed by the World Health Organization.
  • Hold an unrestricted license to practice medicine in at least one state, commonwealth, territory, or possession of the United States or province of Canada. If licenses are held in more than one jurisdiction, all licenses held by the physician must meet this requirement.
  • Have satisfactorily completed specialized training requirements in psychiatry, neurology or child neurology in programs that are accredited by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) or certified by the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada. This training must adhere to all Board requirements.
  • Have successfully passed all STEP 1-3 examinations prior to the fellowship.
  • Three months of EEG/Epilepsy rotation is not required but strongly recommended.

Duration of Training

The UNC Epilepsy Fellowship is a one-year (12-month) program per ABPN Epilepsy Board Certification requirement. Any additional time off beyond the allotted 15 work-day paid time off (PTO) should be approved by the program director and will have make-up time in order to fulfill the Board requirement. Starting date of the fellowship is July 1st of each year.

Available Fellowship Positions

Two fellows per year.

Fellow Salary Level

 PGY 5 or PGY 6 level, based on core program education requirements.

How to apply to the UNC Epilepsy Fellowship

Please send your CV, personal statement, and three letters of recommendation to our program coordinator via email (as attachments), the United States Postal Service or Federal Express (FedEx). One of the letters of recommendation must come from your program director. Applications are accepted beginning 24 months prior to the start date of the fellowship and interviews take place between late fall and early spring until the positions are filled.

Program Coordinators
Taylor Striker and Sharon Ward
email: rescoord[at]neurology.unc.edu
Phone: (919) 966-8162
Fax: (919) 966-2922

UNC Department of Neurology CB#7025
170 Manning Dr
Chapel Hill, NC 27599