Clinical Rotations

Within a 36-month period, Cardiology fellows rotate through the following clinical specialties.


Cardiac Catheterization Laboratory 

Fellows complete a minimum of 4 months in the cardiac cath lab. If the fellow wishes to pursue a career in interventional and/or structural cardiology, they have the opportunity to spend 6 or more months in the cath lab during the third year of fellowship. Fellows serve as the primary operator in diagnostic cases and develop both technical skill and understanding of left and right heart catheterization procedures. Additionally, there is ample opportunity to gain experience in interventional procedures, including complex interventions such as rotational laser/orbital atherectomy, chronic total occlusion (CTO) intervention and mechanical circulatory support assisted PCI. There are also a growing number of peripheral arterial disease cases and pulmonary embolism interventions, including catheter directed therapies and clot retrieval.



The cardiac intensive care unit (CICU) is a 28-bed unit that holds patients with a range of complex cardiac conditions. Fellows complete 2-3 months in the CICU during their fellowship. The CICU rounding team is large and multidisciplinary—in addition to an attending and fellow, it includes internal medicine and emergency medicine residents, pharmacists and nurses. Fellows serve as the team leader. They are responsible for formulating management plans, performing bedside procedures and supervising and teaching the residents. 


Continuity Clinic 

At the start of training, fellows are paired with a continuity clinic mentor. Fellows spend one half day per week seeing patients with their mentor in the clinic. This offers an opportunity for a close and sustained relationship between fellows, faculty mentors and their patients. 



General cardiology fellows have the opportunity to learn advanced cardiac imaging in both Cardiac Computed Tomography and MRI during dedicated months in their third year.  Upon completion of the fellowship, all fellows will receive sufficient training to meet requirements for COCATS level I in both cardiac CTA and cardiac MRI.  All fellows will gain experience with coronary artery calcium (CAC) scoring and basic cardiac CTA interpretation including evaluation of coronary anomalies and extent of coronary artery disease. 



At Rush, fellows who have an interest in imaging are given the opportunity for both a volume and variety offered by few other programs. Fellows are expected to complete a minimum of 6 months of echocardiography, but those interested in non-invasive cardiology will have the opportunity to complete up to 9 months of echocardiography. Over the course of training, Rush fellows interpret >800 transthoracic echocardiograms and often perform greater than 200 transesophageal echocardiograms, with the experience starting in their first year. In addition, the busy Rush Center for Structural Heart Disease program allows for fellows to gain experience in guiding structural heart procedures including left atrial appendage occluder (LAAO) placement, percutaneous mitral valve repair and replacement and TAVR.


Electrophysiology (EP) 

The dedicated EP consult service offers fellows exposure to a range of arrhythmic conditions and treatments. Fellows will learn and gain experience in the areas of arrhythmia mechanisms and their treatment. The general cardiology fellow will spend time in the device clinic to acquire the knowledge to interrogate pacemaker/ICDs independently. Additionally, the fellow will perform direct current cardioversions and tilt table testing. Fellows interested in EP have the opportunity to scrub into device implantation and complex ablation cases using state of the art technologies. 


Advanced Heart Failure 

Fellows spend two months on the advanced heart failure service. Additional time on this service is available for those wishing to gain additional experience or in preparation for a career in Advanced Heart Failure. Fellows round with a multi-disciplinary team of heart failure attendings, pharmacists and social workers, and routinely participate in conferences that examine the most recent heart failure literature. This rotation gives the fellows an in-depth understanding of intracardiac hemodynamics, the use of Swan Ganz catheters, and inotropic support. Additionally, fellows gain extensive experience in the areas of mechanical circulatory support, including percutaneous ventricular assist device (VAD), ECMO and LVADs. 


Nuclear Cardiology 

As one of the few academic centers in the Midwest performing cardiac PET, fellows have the opportunity to gain extensive experience in the acquisition and interpretation of cardiac nuclear medicine studies starting their first year of fellowship. All fellows are easily able to complete 4 months in their first 2 years in order to have completed COCATS level 2 training and be eligible to take the Nuclear Cardiology boards during their third year of fellowship.   


Structural Heart Disease 

Fellows benefit from exposure to the congenital and structural heart disease program, with a one month long rotation, or more if interested. Fellows will also see patients in the Structural clinic, and have the opportunity to scrub into cases including transcatheter aortic valve replacement (TAVR), percutaneous mitral valve repair, PFO, ASD, VSD, paravalvular leak closures, percutaneous valve-in-valve procedures and left atrial appendage occluder placement. 


Rush Oak Park

Rush Oak Park Hospital is a clinical partner of Rush University Medical Center that serves the community of Oak Park. Fellows spend 2 months at Oak Park during their first year. This rotation offers fellows the opportunity to experience cardiology in community practice, develop independence and hone their technical skills. Fellows primarily serve as consultant cardiologists to the inpatient service and also perform TEEs, coronary angiograms and oversee stress testing. Learn more about Rush Oak Park


Cook County Hospital

John H. Stroger, Jr. Hospital of Cook County serves the residents of Cook County and is a short walk from Rush. Fellows will rotate at this site for 1–2 months on the consultation service or CICU. Fellows will have the opportunity to care for a diverse patient population, see a wide range of pathology and participate in daily educational conferences alongside the Cook County cardiology fellows. Learn more about John H. Stroger, Jr. Hospital


Elective/Research Months 

While Rush offers a robust clinical experience, fellows are given ample time and encouraged to engage in research and elective rotations.  Early during their first year, each fellow is paired with mentors appropriate to their area of interest. The Division of Cardiology at Rush offers a large and diverse group of faculty with broad and encompassing areas of expertise. The Faculty are active in research activities and have dedicated interest in fellow education, mentorship, and fostering academic potential. During the second and third year of fellowship, each fellow is given 1-3 months yearly to engage in dedicated research or for elective rotations. Graduates of our program often have developed extensive academic portfolios and are leaders in the areas of research and innovation.