Thomas A. Pittman, MD

Neurosurgery Residency

Our program seeks to bring out the best in our trainees and provide the skills necessary for a successful career as a neurosurgeon. The department provides care through the UK Chandler Hospital, UK Children’s Hospital, Good Samaritan Hospital, and the Cooper Drive VA Medical Center of Lexington, Ky.

Our goal is to provide an education in the theoretical and technical aspects of neurological surgery so that the resident will be equipped for either clinical practice or academic neurosurgery. 

Our objective is to provide an educational experience that will enable our graduates to have the skills required to perform the full range of neurosurgical procedures. We expect our graduates to make sound clinical decisions, be familiar with what is ongoing in the field, and to act responsibly and capably as they care for patients.

Thomas Pittman, MD
Neurosurgery Program Director
Co-Director, Gamma Knife Radiosurgery

The Resident Experience

The University of Kentucky basic science departments are ranked in the top 20 percent of National Institutes of Health (NIH)-funded programs and offer opportunities for research experience. Our residents have the opportunity to learn teaching skills by participating in the neuroanatomy course their second year and conferences throughout their training. There are research opportunities available for up to one year for neurosurgery residents.

Those offering guidance and technical support for residents involved in research include neurosurgery research personnel in the Spinal Cord and Brain Injury Research Center, the Kentucky Brain Restoration Center in the neuroscience department, and the Center for Advanced Translational Stroke Science.

The PGY-5 resident will ordinarily acquire up to six months of research experience by either working in a basic laboratory or completing a clinical research project. Inpatient neurosurgical training occurs at both the UK and VA Medical Centers. The UK Medical Center has a 24-bed neuroscience intensive care unit. Residents learn the concepts of neuro critical care during their rotations through the unit.

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What to Expect

Dedicated neuro-intensivists are involved in the management of all of the patients in the unit and the critical care service. Both the University and VA have resident-staffed outpatient clinics. In addition to ward rotations, the residents spend time on rotations in pathology, radiology, anatomy, neuro critical care, and research.

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Regularly scheduled teaching conferences allow the residents to participate in the process of assessing and diagnosing neurologic diseases. Monthly conferences include grand rounds, topic review, and case discussions. In addition, faculty-run review sessions provide the background information needed for a successful neurosurgical practice as well as examinations.

Program Director

Thomas Pittman, MD
Co-Director, Gamma Knife Radiosurgery

Program Coordinator

Soma Chakraborty Patra