Resident Experience

Case Western Reserve University is at the forefront of much of the orthopaedic research being conducted in the United States and abroad. In fact, the residency training experience at Case Western Reserve University is designed to be fulfilling, educational and preparatory. Living and working in Cleveland allows residents a broad range of professional experiences, from outpatient to inpatient and surgical, as well as a breadth of memorable life experiences.

Patient care is provided on a team basis with residents carrying a major share of the responsibility. Residents have degrees of responsibility and participation in surgery commensurate with their level of training and ability.

Residents rotate through three medical centers: 1) University Hospitals Cleveland Medical Center, 2) MetroHealth Medical Center, and 3) The Wade Park Veteran's Administration Hospital. The attendings at all three sites are Case Western Reserve University faculty dedicated to resident training. All orthopaedic subspecialities, including trauma, pediatrics, tumor, and spine, are represented across the three sites, eliminating the need for residents to rotate through hospitals outside of Cleveland with non-Case Western Reserve faculty.

Operative Experience

The faculty of the department believes that a firm understanding of orthopaedic surgery is a result of interactive learning, and an intense, hands-on surgical experience. Our graduates consistently report that they feel well qualified to handle the practices they enter.

Outpatient Experience

The outpatient clinics provide the majority of resident exposure to the varied nuances of orthopaedics. Many of the clinics are resident-run, with attending faculty members supervising diagnoses and decisions. Private, faculty-run clinics allow residents to see outpatients with a faculty member in a one-on-one setting. Clinics are held in all affiliated facilities and comprise a part of each rotation.

Teaching Conferences

Each affiliated hospital maintains a regular series of teaching conferences. Residents attend department-wide as well as rotation-specific conferences. Teaching in the conferences follows the Socratic method, allowing residents and faculty to interact in a learning environment. Readings and cases selected are appropriate for the topic being discussed. Residents are frequently asked to plan and conduct conferences, presenting cases, articles, data and research as required. Visiting researchers and professors are also asked to present their work.

  • Fracture Review/ Conference Daily/ Weekly
  • Indications Conference Weekly
  • Pediatric Orthopaedic Conference Biweekly
  • Spine Conference Biweekly
  • Musculoskeletal Oncology Conference Biweekly
  • Sports Medicine Conference Biweekly
  • Joint Reconstruction Conference Biweekly
  • Hand Conference Biweekly
  • Department-Wide Grand Rounds Weekly
  • Foot and Ankle Conference Biweekly

Cleveland Orthopaedic Society

The Cleveland orthopaedic community is unique in its conduct of area-wide programs. Monthly continuing education programs in cooperation with the teaching hospitals in the community support not only the practicing orthopaedists, but also the resident and student programs of the community institutions. The programs bring to the city prominent orthopaedists from around the world. Membership in the Cleveland Orthopaedic Society is provided for each resident by the department.

Journal Club

Topical reading of pertinent research and findings is critical to developing a well-rounded orthopaedic surgeon. Each month, Journal Club is hosted by one of the faculty members in his or her home. Residents are responsible for reading, outlining and discussing--with their peers and faculty members--particular articles, studies and findings from The Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery. Additional journal clubs are available to interested residents in trauma and hand.


A full benefits package is available through Apex. All residents are eligible for the following: individual and family health insurance, dental insurance, life insurance, and accidental death and long-term disability insurance. Investment and savings plans, including a 403B matched savings plan, are also available, and professional liability insurance is provided at no cost for residents.

Full-time orthopaedic residents receive three weeks of paid vacation each year. In addition to annual stipend compensation, residents receive a $1,000 annual educational stipend which must be used toward the purchase of textbooks, equipment, courses or other learning aids.

Residents are encouraged to attend national educational conferences, meetings and symposia throughout the course of their training. Graduate physicians selected for the optional research year will be invited to attend the annual American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons and Orthopaedic Research Society meetings that year, as are all PGY-4s. Residents who are presenting papers or studies may also attend. Chief residents are given an additional 5 days’ paid leave to attend a meeting or course of their choice.

Charles H. Herndon Alumni Society

All graduates of the program are inducted into the Charles H. Herndon Alumni Society. This organization provides an opportunity for alumni to maintain contact with each other, to share ideas and otherwise interact. In addition to a frequent newsletter and annual Academy dinners, biannual meetings are held throughout the United States and abroad.

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