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Visiting Medical Student Clerkships

Surgery, Thoracic (Minnesota)


Students function as a part of the thoracic surgical team in preoperative evaluations, surgery and postoperative care for patients. They have the opportunity to individually evaluate selected patients and have that evaluation reviewed by a consultant. Students attend consultations, rounds and conferences, and assist in the operating room. They are based at Saint Marys Hospital.

Specific goals

  1. Gain a thorough knowledge of thoracic surgical evaluation, as well as plans, goals, risks, alternatives and techniques for the surgical treatment of patients with a wide variety of pulmonary, esophageal, mediastinal, tracheal, chest wall and diaphragmatic diseases. This includes both surgical and non-surgical alternatives to specific problems.
  2. Become familiar with the postoperative management of general thoracic surgical patients.
  3. Gain familiarity and expertise in the function of chest tubes, drainage systems, placement of central venous lines, enteral and parenteral alimentation, airway control, cardiovascular respiratory monitoring, use of ventilators and other aspects of routine and intensive surgical care as they relate to general thoracic surgical patients.

Activity outline

Students attend in surgery, participate in clinical rounds, work up and assess patients, and attend conferences.

Method of evaluation

Students are evaluated on the basis of their daily performance, participation in rounds, and response to specific assignments given by the consultants and residents.

Clerkship director

K. Robert Shen, M.D.