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Peripheral Intervention
September 16th, 2016

Cook Medical provides devices, training during first-ever UC Health−Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center IR fellows workshop


From left, Drs. John Racadio, Seetharam Chadalavada, and Matt Smetts observe Dr. Sinisa Haberle perform a simulated complex inferior vena cava (IVC) filter removal procedure.Cook Medical recently participated in a collaborative, first-of-its-kind fellows workshop at the Interventional Radiology−Translational Research and Simulation Lab (IR−TRSL) at the Cincinnati Children’s Hospital Medical Center (CCHMC). The innovative workshop was designed for adult and pediatric IR fellows at the University of Cincinnati (UC) Medical Center and CCHMC respectively.

The fellows program was the brainchild of Dr. Seetharam Chadalavada, Assistant Professor of Radiology, Division of Interventional Radiology at UC Health. To bring his vision to life, Dr. Chadalavada collaborated with Dr. John Racadio, Division Chief of IR at CCHMC, and Nicole Hilvert, Senior Research Assistant and Manager of the IR-TRSL. Together, they devised a course that would utilize the strengths of each facility.

During the half-day course, IR fellows from UC and CCHMC were provided opportunities to experiment with new techniques, fluoroscopy time, and learning about tools and resources … all without practicing on a patient.

“We wanted to develop a course that helps fellows understand the depth and breadth of their toolbox in simulated scenarios that are available in the IR-TRSL,” Dr. Chadalavada said.

According to Hilvert, the lab has historically been used for pre-clinical technology development, device evaluation, physician training, and even occasionally to provide care for animals from the Cincinnati Zoo. “The idea to repurpose the lab to allow more time for fellows training seemed like an ideal inter-hospital partnership,” she said.

To procure the necessary devices for the workshop, Dr. Chadalavada first reached out to Saumya Premachandra, Cook Medical’s manager of the Vista Residents and Fellows Program. He had previously collaborated with Cook on a hands-on program during his fellowship program in 2015 at the Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania.

“It was a natural fit for us to collaborate with UC on this new fellowship program because Cook has such an extensive offering of products,” Saumya said. “The fact that the faculty developed a self-assessment survey to measure improvements in the fellows’ technical and clinical skill set competency made this a unique collaborative experience.”

According to the post-workshop survey, fellows reported that their clinical and technical confidence levels had improved as a result of the course. There was also consensus that they had enjoyed the hands-on experience with new devices and techniques. One of the workshop participants stated that he particularly enjoyed “getting to try things that I haven’t been able to do in fellowship thus far, such as iliac and renal stenting.”

Each said they would recommend that the workshop be incorporated into the UC and CCHMC IR fellowship programs.

“This is the first iteration of something that will be evolving,” Dr. Racadio said. “We will continue to tailor the course to better serve our fellows going forward.”

Dr. Chadalavada said the fellowship experience is vital in the transition to the role of attending.

“One of the most important things to learn in order to become an effective attending physician is how to problem-solve, evaluate, and make decisions,” he said. “The decision-making component is a composite of bookwork, technical skills, resources, experience, technology, and equipment training. All of these culminate into the ability to provide the greatest care for patients.”

For more hands-on opportunities, sign up for one of Cook Medical’s Vista® Education and Training courses.

Dr. Seetharam Chadalavada, Dr. John Racadio, and Nicole Hilvert are not paid consultants for Cook Medical.