Johns Hopkins University Hot

John LanglandJohn Langland   August 20, 2007  
 
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9.4 (3)
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Contact Information

City
Baltimore
State/Province
Maryland

Program Information

Residents per class
4
Johns Hopkins University Orthopedic Surgery Residency Program

User reviews

3 reviews

Overall rating 
 
9.4
Staff Surgeons 
 
8.7  (3)
Didactics/Teaching 
 
9.7  (3)
Operating Experience 
 
9.3  (3)
Clinical Experience 
 
9.7  (3)
Research 
 
10.0  (3)
Residents 
 
9.7  (3)
Lifestyle 
 
8.7  (3)
Location 
 
9.3  (3)
Overall Experience 
 
9.7  (3)
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Overall rating 
 
9.7
Staff Surgeons 
 
9.0
Didactics/Teaching 
 
10.0
Operating Experience 
 
9.0
Clinical Experience 
 
10.0
Research 
 
10.0
Residents 
 
10.0
Lifestyle 
 
9.0
Location 
 
10.0
Overall Experience 
 
10.0

Hopkins Residency

Program Review

Staff / Faculty / Chairman
Dr. James Ficke has been our chairman now for the past 2 years, and has a clear direction for the department and the program. Personally, he is very approachable and goes out of his way to be available to the residents. Dr. Laporte has been the program director for several years and is equally approachable. After Dr. Frassica stepped down in 2011, there was the typical period of faculty turnover. We have filled those vacant positions and established a solid base on which to continue building the residency for the future. The pediatric, trauma, spine, and sports divisions retained all if not nearly all of the already excellent faculty. The Bayview division saw a great deal of turnover, but added Drs. Khanuja and Robert Sterling with plans to add a third arthroplasty attending in the next year. Our previous rotations at Good Samaritan Hopsital have been transitioned to Suburban Hospital in D.C., and has nearly the same faculty experience. Drs. Carol Morris and Adam Levine from Sloane Kettering have been monumental in revitalizing the oncology division, and are some of the most talented surgeons I have had the opportunity to work with. The only rotation where we travel is to Union Memorial for foot and ankle, which has one of the best F&A fellowship programs in the country.
Didactics / Teaching
Each service has their own individual didactics schedule and teaching conferences on a weekly basis, consisting of pre/postoperative conference and small group didactics. The program has weekly Grand rounds followed by protected resident education time every Thursday from 7am until noon. These are faculty led and range across all subspecialties. There are monthly skills labs at our Bayview campus, and feature cadaver dissection and hands-on teaching for spine, arthroplasty, trauma, and arthroscopy. The education calendar is typically geared for OITE preparation from July through November, and then broader educational topics for the remainder of the year.
Operating Experience
Having only rotated at Hopkins, I of course will have a biased perspective on operative experience and how that may compare to other institutions. That said, I would feel comfortable having my current chief class operate on a family member. You shouldn't expect to be operating as an intern, period. As a PGY-2 you will get your feet wet in most of the major subspecialties and will be first assist in most cases, or scrubbed behind a chief/fellow. As a PGY-3 and PGY-4 you will be expected to run some of the services such as hand, spine, arthroplasty, peds, and basic trauma and for those services you will operate - a lot. While I will be doing a trauma fellowship, I feel more than capable of doing general orthopaedics including ACL/PCL, ACDF, PSF, trauma, pediatric fractures, basic foot and ankle, TKA, THA, etc. Really, operative experience is dependent on how comfortable your chief feels in their own abilities. If a chief feels they need to do more of x or y procedure, you won't do much of those procedures as a junior. Here, I have never felt like that is the case, as I had plenty opportunity as a pgy-2 or 3 to operate. If I scrub for a hip fracture/Hemiarthroplasty/ankle fracture/distal radius/etc as a chief, it has been to walk a junior resident through the case, not to do it myself. Additionally, we have few fellows (3 spine, 2 shoulder, 1 peds) so the vast majority of cases are covered entirely by residents.
Clinic Experience
Clinic is well managed. Most services have 1-2 days of clinic per week with the volume of patients varying by attending. We use Epic for our patient charting which has been fairly straightforward. Attendings go out of their way to teach physical exam pearls and review radiographs/CT/MRI. We take care of the homeless/uninsured from inner city Baltimore and international patients from all over the world in the same clinic. You will see everyday orthopaedic conditions and rare genetic syndromes that may have also been discovered here.
Research Opportunities
Vast, with opportunities within any subspecialty that interests you. The resources here are incredible, and several services have their own research coordinator. Funding through NIH or national organization grants (OREF, OTA, AAOS) is readily available and residents are encouraged to apply for grants.

The T32 program also just started last year, and provides funding for one resident each year to devote a full year to orthopaedic research with no clinical responsibilities. This is completely optional, and the resident is selected by application.
Residents
Arguably the most important factor, as these are the people you will be spending the most time with over the next 5-6 years. The camaraderie here is strong, and everyone does their share. My classmates are my best friends, and we learn from and rely on one another. We find time outside of work to spend together as well, and there are numerous social opportunities. I have felt that previous graduating chiefs have been excellent surgeons and I felt lucky to have learned from them.
Lifestyle
I see a good number of reviews that say Hopkins is busy. This is true, and you should desire this. Busy means opportunities for learning, operative experience, and training to be a better surgeon. Call is heaviest as a PGY-2 and gradually decreases each year.
Location / Housing
Baltimore is a great city to live. It's extremely affordable for an East Coast city, with cost of living well below that of DC, Philly, or NYC. Most residents live around the main campus, with a few that have families living in the suburbs. It is easy to take a weekend trip up to New York or DC if you so choose. The city itself has a reputation of having higher than average crime rate, but I've never felt threatened. Much like any large urban area, there are neighborhoods where you should probably not be walking at night.
Limitations
Perhaps the only downside is that the majority of our sports experience comes late, as a PGY-5. That being said, previous chiefs that have gone on to specialize in sports medicine have not had difficulty finding fellowship matches.
Overall Rotation Experience / Conclusion
I feel fortunate to have trained here. Give strong consideration to applying/rotating here as a student, you will not be disappointed.

Qualification

I am a current resident of this program.
Date of Rotation
2011-2016
Was this review helpful to you? 
(Updated: January 11, 2016)
Overall rating 
 
9.7
Staff Surgeons 
 
9.0
Didactics/Teaching 
 
10.0
Operating Experience 
 
10.0
Clinical Experience 
 
10.0
Research 
 
10.0
Residents 
 
10.0
Lifestyle 
 
9.0
Location 
 
9.0
Overall Experience 
 
10.0

Visiting medial student

Program Review

Staff / Faculty / Chairman
This is a great program through and through!!
The staff is nice and approachable. The faculty is always ready to answer your questions and teach you anything as long as you are willing to learn. Resident education is the main focus of this program, they take less fellows so most of the surgeries are done by the residents.
The Chair of the program is an army colonel, Dr. James R Ficke. He has been the chair since taking over from the interim chair Dr. Charles W. Cummings a few years back. His humility is the first thing anyone who meets him is struck by. The residents and staff admire and respect him greatly which says a lot about his leadership. Dr. D. Laporte is an excellent program director and is devoted to making sure the program stays on top and the residents needs are met.
Vicky Norton is the residency coordinator, she is very good at her job. She is just a sweetheart, greets you with smiles, and the next time you meet her be sure to get your big hug. She makes you feel welcome.
I had the opportunity of being supervised by Dr. Sponseller, he is an excellent teacher, surgeon and researcher. He is very hardworking to the extent that makes me wonder if he ever sleeps or if he has more than a 24 hr day.
Didactics / Teaching
The curriculum consists of basic and clinical sciences taught by the faculty, with extensive resident participation. There are also lectures in pathology, human anatomy, OITE reviews and journal club
Each subspecialty holds morning conferences. Grand rounds are on Thursdays, after which the residents stay for their lectures that lasts for many hours. Each month, 3 hour teaching sessions on Thursday mornings are held at the international center for orthopedic advancement.
Operating Experience
The operating experience is great. The residents work under the supervision of the faculty and are allowed to operate. There are very few fellows at this program and I think this is because the faculty wants the residents to gain as much exposure as possible. The cases are also very interesting as you can see very rare cases you may not see elsewhere.
Clinic Experience
The clinical experience is very vast. The exposure is great as they have international patients from all over the world. There is virtually no case you will not see at Hopkins, from the mild ones to the rare cases.
Research Opportunities
The program also receives funding from the National Institutes of Health. There is a program known as Training in Orthopaedic Team Science (TOTS) which was developed to better integrate musculoskeletal research into resident training.

The Ross Research Building is a 7,500 square feet of lab space that serves the Oncology Research Program, the Nerve Regeneration Lab and the Center for Musculoskeletal Research. There is also an International Center for Orthopedic Advancement on the Bayview Campus. There is interdisciplinary interaction with biomechanical engineers, molecular biologists and others to further enhance research productivity.

If you are interested in research this is a place for you. As a visiting student, I utilized these resources first hand, it made my research experience a pleasant one and it peaked my interest in research.
Residents
The residents are laid back and have excellent relationships with each other. They do a lot of things together both at the hospital and outside.
Lifestyle
This is a very busy program. However, it still affords you time to have a life outside of work.
Location / Housing
Personally, I like Baltimore. Safety appears to be a concern while visiting the city. The hospital is located in one of the unsafe areas in the city, but there is good security around the hospital. There are many safe places to live, like Federal Hill, Charles village, Canton and others. There are great places to eat and Baltimore is known for excellent crab dishes.
Limitations
Honestly, I am not aware of any. May be there are limitations that I did not notice, due to the length of the time I spent there.
Overall Rotation Experience / Conclusion
I enjoyed this rotation. The residents and faculty were nice to me. It was a good learning experience for me. There are lots of opportunities and resources at your disposal. It gives you well balanced education in basic and clinical sciences and also in research. This program will prepare any resident to be the best orthopedic surgeon he/she can be.

Qualification

I rotated as a medical student at this program
Date of Rotation
2015
Was this review helpful to you? 
(Updated: January 01, 2012)
Overall rating 
 
8.9
Staff Surgeons 
 
8.0
Didactics/Teaching 
 
9.0
Operating Experience 
 
9.0
Clinical Experience 
 
9.0
Research 
 
10.0
Residents 
 
9.0
Lifestyle 
 
8.0
Location 
 
9.0
Overall Experience 
 
9.0

Pedi Ortho with Sponny

Program Review

Staff / Faculty / Chairman
As many of you know, the current chairman is a retired ENT physician. The search for a permanent chair is continuing. I assume that they will have someone by July 2013. Usually a new chairman means more money for the program, some staff turnover, and some new ideas. However Dr. LaPorte is an incredible PD and I am sure that the program will only continue to improve with or without a new chair. The faculty is for the most part excellent. They love teaching and love handing over the scalpel. However there are a few infamously crochetty attendings on the faculty. I worked with Dr. Sponseller (Sponny) for the majority of the rotation. He is an great teacher and an incredibly hard worker. While working with him you will see almost everything in Lovell and Winter's.
Didactics / Teaching
Didactics is a strong point at Hopkins. At the start fo the rotation I was given the entire Lovell and Winter's in electronic format on a flash drive.

Every morning there is fracture conference at ~7:00a.m. where all of the residents go over consults from the day/night before and get grilled on management. It is scary but helpful. Additionally there is a blocked out didactic time on Thursday mornings from around 8 till noon. There are guest lecturers, OITE review, etc. These lectures were very well organized. There may be other didactics that I am unaware of as well.

Attendings love to teach in the OR and clinic and aren't afraid to let residents operate. In fact I did a "skin-to-skin" case with the resident as 1st assist and the attending unscrubed during my rotation.
Operating Experience
There is 24 hour PA coverage so residents are either in the operating room or clinic starting at PGY2. There aren't any consult or mule rotations. There is a rumor that people at Hopkins don't operate much, but I did not see that. Often the PGY3 was 1st assist in one room and the PGY5 was walking the PGY2 through the case in the other OR.
Clinic Experience
There was a good mix of OR and clinic. Probably 3 days in OR, 2 days in clinic. In clinic we saw everything under the sun in pediatric Ortho. Because it is Hopkins, patients come from everywhere to be treated. Hopkins has a strong relationship with the Middle East, so we saw a lot of patients from there.
Research Opportunities
Obviously a strong point of the program. You can do research in anything that interests you. Starting during your PGY2 year you meet with a mentor and discuss a project. There is then 10 week in your PGy3 and PGY4 years of blocked off research time. With that in mind, people here can do a lot of research and publish as much as they want.
Residents
Great group of people. Five residents a year makes for a good mix of personalities. A lot of the residents hang out outside of the hospital and everyone seemed to get along great while in the hospital even during the difficult rotations. I was impressed with how laid back and non cut-throat they were. I am not sure where that rumor started but it isn't true anymore.
Lifestyle
The program is tough on a PGY2 with call and Peds, Trauma, Bayview, and Spine rotations. After that it gets easier. Chief year can be challenging at times as well. Overall the residents seem to have time to go out a night esp. after PGY2 year. Additionally they are team physicians for the Orioles so they get to go to the games, etc. There are programs with better lifestyle, but you get your bang for your buck here in terms of Ortho education.
Location / Housing
Baltimore is Baltimore. You love it or you hate it. The hospital is in the ghetto and no one lives within a 5 minute drive. Most people live in the city around Caton, Federal Hill, Butcher Hill, Charles Village. Some people live outside the city. There is a decent mix. Baltimore is expensive but not as expensive as D.C. or Philly. There are definitely great places to live. Also the food in BMore is great, you just have to know where to go. Fells Point and the Inner Harbor are great places to hang. The Ravens are Super Bowl champs. BMore has lots to offer, but it turns off many because it is not the cleanest or easiest city to get around in.
Limitations
PGY2 year and part of PGY3 year are tough. Some of the attendings are jerks. They also just lost Dr. Kristy Weber just left for UPenn which is a big loss for Tumor.
Overall Rotation Experience / Conclusion
Great place. Not malignant. Great group of residents. Would be a great place to train.

Qualification

I rotated as a medical student at this program
Date of Rotation
2012
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9.4 (3)
Category: Maryland
Johns Hopkins University Orthopedic Surgery Residency Program
Hopkins Residency (Written by Adam Shaner, February 15, 2016)
 
9.7
Visiting medial student (Written by Gift u, January 11, 2016)
 
9.7
Pedi Ortho with Sponny (Written by Austin McKay, February 22, 2013)
 
8.9

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