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The two-year Cardiothoracic Surgery Fellowship at RUSH University Medical Center provides a well-balanced operative and didactic experience in both cardiac and thoracic surgery. Our primary focus is training competent surgeons in a multidisciplinary setting.

Our bi-weekly didactic sessions follow the Thoracic Surgery Directors Association (TSDA) curriculum throughout the two-year period.


Protected educational time occurs Wednesday mornings and Friday mornings. The Wednesday morning conference consists of oral board preparation, faculty lectures and SESATS review. Friday morning sessions are dedicated to small group review of the TSDA curriculum through directed readings from the online Learning Management System.

Morbidity and Mortality conferences occur monthly for the Department of CVT Surgery at Rush, and weekly combined with General Surgery at Stroger. There are also weekly tumor boards and cath conferences at both institutions.

Research Opportunities

Fellows are required to complete at least one project during their two-year fellowship with the goal of presentation on a national level and publication. Each fellow selects a faculty mentor for his or her project. While original ideas are supported, fellows are welcome to join one of the many projects in development by the faculty.


Monthly surgical simulation labs are organized to reinforce surgical technique. Labs are tailored to topics such as mechanical circulatory support, valve repair, aortic procedures, coronary anastomoses, and VATS lobectomy.


Our program supports two separate tracks in Thoracic surgery – a cardiothoracic track and a general thoracic track. We accept one fellow for each track per year, for a total of 4 fellows. Rotations are designed to meet the goals of each track, allowing some freedom in the second year to tailor the experience to each fellow’s particular interests.

Rotation Blocks