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UCLA Head and Neck Surgery


Fellowship Program

Fellowship Program

Our department offers fellowships in Laryngology, Advanced Head and Neck Surgery, and Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery.

Laryngology Fellowship

Fellowship Program - UCLA Head and Neck Surgery - Dr. Burke and fellows.Two fellowship opportunities are available each year in Laryngology.  The UCLA Laryngology Fellowship is a comprehensive program designed to cover the entire breadth of experience in voice, swallowing, and airway disorders as outlined below:

Voice Disorders:  assessment techniques (in-office flexible and rigid laryngoscopy, laryngo-video-stroboscopy, acoustic analysis, aerodynamic analysis, laryngeal electromyography, laryngeal imaging); office-based procedures (lafryngeal biopsy, laryngeal injection, pulse-dye-laser therapy); treatment of non-neoplastic diseases (microlaryngeal surgery, phonosurgery, endoscopic and open surgery); neoplastic diseases of the larynx (endoscopic laser laryngeal surgery, open partial laryngeal surgery, subtotal and total laryngectomy); neurolaryngology (injection laryngoplasty, framework surgery including thyroplasties and arytenoid adduction, laryngeal reinnervation for unilateral and bilateral vocal fold paralysis,  Botox® therapy, selective adductor denervation reinnervation surgery for spasmodic dysphonia); management of the post-laryngectomy voice; and care of the professional voice patient.

Swallowing Disorders: assessment techniques (fiberoptic endoscopic evaluation of swallowing, trans-nasal esophagoscopy, video fluoroscopy, pharyngeal and esophageal imaging); medical and surgical treatment of swallowing disorders (swallow therapy, laser and open treatment of cricopharyngeal dysfunction and Zenker's diverticulum, hypopharyngoplasty, management of esophageal strictures, esophageal biopsy and injection); in-office procedures (esophageal dilation, injection laryngoplasty); and swallow rehabilitation.

Airway Disorders: assessment techniques (office bronchoscopy, tracheal imaging); treatment of airway stenosis (endoscopic laser and dilation, fiber-based laser techniques, tracheal resection, cricotracheal resection, laryngotracheoplasty, and tracheal stents).

Educational Approach

The fellow in Laryngology is expected to develop comprehensive experience and superb skills in all clinical areas in laryngology via direct involvement in patient evaluation and management in the clinics and the operating room.  A fully equipped videostroboscopic suite is provided to the fellow to gain experience in patient assessment techniques.  A computer-equipped working area is also provided for self-directed learning.  The fellow will work alongside fellowship directors, voice scientists, speech pathologists, and other related subspecialists, and play an active role in the team management of patients with voice, airway, and swallowing disorders.  The fellow functions at the level of a clinical instructor and will assume the role of supervising surgeon to the otolaryngology residents. There are also ample opportunities for interactions with researchers in the laryngeal laboratories (Laryngeal Physiology Laboratory, Laryngeal Dynamics Laboratory, and the Voice Perception Laboratory), to develop an in-depth understanding of laryngeal physiology, to guide the fellow's futures clinical and research endeavors, and to develop clinical and basic science research projects. 

Application Information

Applicants must be physicians who have completed an accredited otolaryngology - head and neck surgery residency in the United States.  A two-year fellowship is recommended to master all aspects of laryngology for those on track to become an academic laryngologist, but one-year fellowships are also accommodated.  Applications should be submitted at least 1 year prior to the July 1st start date; however, due to the highly competitive nature of the fellowship, interested applicants should initiate contact at least 2 years prior to the start date. A California medical license is required.

Please send curriculum vitae and letter of interest to:
Gerald S. Berke, MD
Professor and Chair
UCLA Department of Head and Neck Surgery
David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA
10833 Le Conte Avenue, CHS 62-132
Los Angeles, CA 90095
Telephone: (310) 825-5179


Advanced Head and Neck Surgery Fellowship

The Department of Head and Neck Surgery at UCLA has a long standing, well-earned reputation for excellence in patient care and training future leaders in Otolaryngology/Head and Neck Surgery. In addition to its competitive residency program, the Department offers an Advanced Head and Neck Surgery fellowship, under the co-directions of Dr. Elliot Abemayor and Dr. Keith Blackwell. This is a one-year program structured to enhance surgical skills obtained during head and neck residency as well as to teach the necessary elements of being a key member of a multidisciplinary head and neck cancer team. The program is geared to physicians who want to work in academic centers where modern head and neck procedures are performed. During the fellowship, emphasis is placed on learning current methods of conservation laryngeal surgery, anterior and lateral skull base surgery, and complex ablative procedures requiring free flap reconstruction. In addition, there is plentiful experience with advanced endocrine surgical procedures, as well as the opportunity to first-assist in microvascular flap reconstructions. The fellowship year provides ample opportunities to participate in clinical research projects.

Applicants must have completed an ABO-approved Otolaryngology-Head and Neck surgery residency and should apply one year prior to the July 1st start date. In addition to a current curriculum vita, at least two letters of recommendation are needed. Prior to the start of the fellowship, a California medical license is required as well as Board-eligibility or certification.

Please send a curriculum vitae and letter of interest to:

Elliot Abemayor, MD, PhD 
Professor, Department of Head and Neck Surgery
David Geffen School of Medicine at UCLA
10833 Le Conte Avenue, CHS 62-132 
Los Angeles, CA 90095-1624
Telephone: (310) 825-6405

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Fellowship in Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery

The Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery fellowship is a one-year training program, established in 1998 and certified by the American Academy of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery. It offers a broad exposure to both aesthetic and reconstructive surgery for graduates of an accredited head and neck residency. During the course of the year, the fellow participates in approximately 300 facial aesthetic surgeries, 80 major head and neck microvascular reconstructions, and 80 Mohs reconstructions. The fellow has opportunities to work with experts in dermatology and oculoplastics depending on his or her interest.  Scientific research opportunities are abundant as is writing for publication.  Teaching opportunities with the residents both inside and outside the operating room are encouraged throughout the year.

Generally, independence increases as the year progresses.  Typically, the fellow is at UCLA from Monday to Wednesday and involved with major head and neck reconstruction, Mohs reconstruction, and some aesthetic surgery.  On Thursday and Friday the fellow is in Santa Barbara focusing on aesthetic surgery.  The fellow has the opportunity in the latter portion of the year to staff cases for the residents at the affiliated UCLA hospitals and the VA.  In addition, the fellow does an increasing number of his or her own aesthetic cases in the latter half of the year.

The goals of the program are to develop a surgeon capable and confident in the decision-making, planning, surgical management, and follow-up of a wide variety of facial plastic and reconstructive surgery patients.  In addition, the fellow must complete a research paper to be presented at the AAFPRS meeting, and complete the American Board of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery fellowship exam at the end of the fellowship year.

Applicant Information

Interested applicants must have completed a head and neck surgery residency and should apply through AAFPRS (American Association of Facial Plastic and Reconstructive Surgery) 18 months in advance of the July 1st start date.

For additional information regarding the fellowship, contact Co-Directors Keith Blackwell, MD at (310) 206-4725 or Gregory Keller, MD at (805) 687-6408.

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