Pediatric Cardiology Fellowship Program

Cath lab
Curriculum

During the 36-month training program, our cardiology fellows rotate through all disciplines of pediatric cardiology, including:

  • Interventional cardiology
  • Echocardiography
  • Electrophysiology
  • Clinical ward 
  • Intensive care cardiology
  • Adult congenital cardiology
  • Weekly outpatient continuity clinic

Electives are offered in many areas including heart failure, outpatient cardiology and pediatric critical care.  

     
 
FourthYearFellowship
    After completion of a 3-year fellowship, fourth year training is available to internal and external candidates in noninvasive imaging, interventional cardiology, electrophysiology, cardiac intensive care, outcomes research and heart failure/transplant.
 
     

After completion of a three-year fellowship, fourth-year training is available to internal and external candidates in:

  • Noninvasive imaging
  • Interventional cardiology
  • Electrophysiology
  • Cardiac intensive care
  • Outcomes research
  • Heart failure/transplant

Our program offers fellows the opportunity to obtain an MPH at Emory's Rollins School of Public Health or an MBA from Emory's Goizueta Business School. Fellows also can participate in the Emory Global Health Residency Scholars Program, which includes a yearlong curriculum (consisting of a series of monthly lectures, seminars, discussions or journal club) and a one-month clinical rotation in Ethiopia.

Our program offers fellows the opportunity to:

  • Present at our annual Pediatric Echocardiography course.
  • Participate in important research—clinical, translational, basic science, multi-center, interdisciplinary
  • Develop a comprehensive understanding of the outpatient management of both childhood and adult congenital heart disease and the need for continuous follow-up during a patient's lifetime.
  • Learn associated disciplines such as genetics, radiology and cardiothoracic surgery.
  • Enhance decision-making skills in a program that supports autonomy with appropriate oversight.
  • Serve as a primary caretaker while rotating in cardiology clinical services.

Schedule

 Four-week rotations           Year 1    Year 2    Year 3 
 Cardiac Intensive Care       0        3   0
 Echocardiography   3   1   0
 Catheterization   2   0   0-1
 Wards/consult   4   2   1-2
 Electrophysiology   1   1   0
 Research   2   6   5
 Electives   0   0   3-5
 Adult congenital/MRI   0   0   1

On-call Schedule

Fellows take call approximately:

  • 1 in 5 nights as first years
  • 1 in 6 nights as second years
  • 1 in 7 nights as third years 

Intensive Care: Fellows gain an understanding of the preoperative, surgical and postoperative management of newborns and children with complex congenital heart disease. Fellows also gain an understanding of the medical management of complex dysrhythmias, heart failure, including cardiac transplant management, ventricular assist devices and extracorporeal membrane oxygenation (ECMO); and become proficient in obtaining vascular access and performing intubations, ventilator management and management of inotropic support agents.

Echocardiography (Echo): In year one, training in basic echo is completed, and manipulative and cognitive skills in 2-D and Doppler assessment are mastered. By the end of the second year, fellows should be able to confidently complete complex segmental analysis. During the third year, basic skills in fetal echo and transesophageal echo are learned.

Catheterization: During the first year, fellows learn basic catheter manipulation skills and fundamentals of hemodynamic interpretation. By the end of the second year, these skills are refined so that basic diagnostic procedures, although supervised, can be performed mostly unassisted. In the third year, specialized skills of intervention, such as balloon valve dilatation, angioplasty and device placement are refined.

Electrophysiology (EP): During the first year, fellows become proficient in the diagnosis and management of common pediatric arrhythmias. In the second and third years, fellows learn the indications and basic principles for invasive EP testing, catheter ablation, tilt table testing, transesophageal pacing and indications for cardiac pacing; in addition to interrogation and programming of pacemakers and implantable cardiac devices (ICDs). Fellows also learn about atrial electrograms with temporary pacing wires and pace termination of atrial arrhythmias in an Intensive Care Unit.

Research: In year one, fundamentals of research principles, ethics of human investigation and experimental design are examined. In the second year, research continues with research projects and presentation and with manuscript submission to a peer-reviewed journal as well as a presentation at a national meeting. Researchers supported by the National Institutes for Health (NIH) collaborate and actively participate in the program.

Electives: Electives can be designed to suit an individual fellow’s interest. Some possibilities are transplant or anesthesia. Other resources in the Emory University community, such as the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), are available for electives.

Adult Congenital Heart Disease: In collaboration with Emory University School of Medicine, we participate in one of the largest adult congenital heart disease programs in the United States, with approximately 2000 outpatient visits each year. Fellows rotate through this clinic, which is supervised by adult cardiologists at Emory Healthcare and pediatric cardiologists from Sibley Heart Center Cardiology.

Inpatient Rotation: During the clinical rotation, in year one, fellows become familiar with clinical features of congenital heart disease. In the second and third years, they become conversant with these, as well as their surgical and medical treatment. By the third year, they have experienced the majority of clinical cardiac problems and should be able to evaluate and treat these independent of faculty.

Cardiac MRI: Fellows will gain knowledge of cardiac MRI principles, imaging planes and protocols. In addition, they will be able to conduct a basic interpretation including quantifying function, vessel flow and developing 3-D models. By the end of their fellowship, fellows will learn to make recommendations based on the findings of the MRI.

Continuity Clinic: Fellows participate in biweekly all-day continuity clinics. Here they develop a comprehensive understanding of the outpatient diagnosis and management of congenital heart disease and the need for continuous follow-up during these patients’ lifetimes and into adulthood.

Teaching: Throughout the training program, fellows prepare and present lectures and conferences to audiences of medical students, residents, faculty and guests of the Children’s Sibley Heart Center. Each year fellows present at our annual echo meeting, which is a national event. Each fellow maintains a teaching portfolio.

Family-centered Care and Support: Fellows learn to talk to families about the new diagnosis of congenital heart disease and its ramifications, as well as communicating with them about evolving changes in their pediatric patients’ diseases. As team members, fellows participate in daily medical rounds and all cardiology conferences.