Movement Disorders Fellowship Training Program
The primary missions for The Parkinson's Disease Center and Movement Disorders Clinic, headed by Joseph Jankovic, M.D., professor of Neurology, are:
- To provide the most professional and compassionate care for patients with Parkinson’s disease, other neurodegenerative disorders, and movement disorders, such as tremor, dystonia, Tourette’s syndrome, Huntington’s disease, restless legs syndrome, ataxia and spasticity;
- To initiate and conduct clinical and basic research which upholds the highest scientific standards, and
- To train physicians to become skilled in the recognition and treatment of movement disorders and to inspire them to pursue basic or clinical research in the area of movement and neurodegenerative disorders.
The PDCMDC also provides a setting for clinical research and a two-year fellowship program, which focuses on the recognition, pathophysiology and treatment of movement disorders, including development of skills in botulinum toxin injections and deep brain stimulation.
Texas Medical Center
We are located in Baylor College of Medicine’s Department of Neurology, at 6550 Fannin, Suite 1801, Houston, TX 77030. The Smith Tower is a major outpatient care facility jointly owned by BCM and The Methodist Hospital, and is conveniently located within the Texas Medical Center.
In our center we have eight offices (100 square feet each), a movement disorder laboratory (810 square feet), and secretarial cubical areas (390 square feet), which are currently occupied by personnel who are engaged in the HD clinic. We also have an 800 square feet Experimental Therapeutics Center, which houses our nurse manager and social worker. Our actual clinic space consists of 19 examination rooms (100 square feet each), one procedure room (300 square feet) two nurse's stations (336 square feet each) and a reception/waiting area (1,620 square feet).
The Movement Disorders Fellowship Training Program at Department of Neurology, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, Texas, founded by Dr. Joseph Jankovic in 1977, is an integral part of the Parkinson's Disease Center and Movement Disorders Clinic. The focus of research at the PDCMDC has been on clinical, epidemiologic, and genetic studies designed to elucidate the pathogenic mechanisms of the various movement disorders. In addition, experimental therapeutics and surgical treatment of movement disorders have been among the most important areas of investigation. The fellows obtain one-on-one mentoring from PDCMDC faculty and training in the diagnosis and treatment of a large variety of hypokinetic and hyperkinetic movement disorders. The trainees also develop skills in the administration of botulinum toxin injections, in evaluating patients before and after deep brain stimulation, and other therapeutic interventions.
The fellows have an easy, direct, and frequent access to the PDCMDC faculty and other clinical and basic science researchers and collaborators. By developing and pursuing mentor-guided projects and adhering to the Good Clinical Practice standards, they acquire knowledge about study design, conduct of clinical trials, data collection and analysis, and scientific writing. The fellows participate in weekly video rounds and neurogenetic workshops and monthly journal clubs and deep brain stimulation conferences. They critically evaluate literature and present their findings at lectures, by scientific articles, and other scientific and educational conferences. They are also involved in new and ongoing clinical research trials and other PDCMDC studies in experimental therapeutics, pharmacology, physiology, epidemiology, and genetics of disorders of movement and motor control. Fellows are encouraged to present abstracts at various national and international meetings and to be the first authors on publications in peer-reviewed journals. The faculty of the PDCMDC has published nearly 1,000 articles, chapters, and other publications. Dr. Jankovic has co-edited over 50 books and volumes, including several standard textbooks such as "Neurology in Clinical Practice" (http://www.NICP.com), "Parkinson's Disease and Movement Disorders" (along with a video atlas), and "Principles and Practice of Movement Disorders", based on an annual comprehensive course on movement disorders. All new fellows are invited to this course offered each summer in Aspen, Colorado (http://ColumbiaCME.org).
The MDFTP has been certified by the Texas State Board of Medical Examiners as a two-year clinical fellowship program. Fellows who complete the two-year fellowship will receive a diploma, signed by Dr. Jankovic and BCM officials. During the third (optional) year, the fellow may continue the training as a clinical fellow or he/she may elect to participate in basic research and acquire skills in various laboratory techniques necessary for the study of biologic, genetic, and biochemical mechanisms of neurodegenerative disorders. Fellows who obtain Texas medical license and become appropriately credentialed become eligible for a faculty appointment.
As most top Movement Disorders Fellowship programs in North America have agreed to join the Movement Disorder Fellowship Match Network, a computerized match conducted by SFMatch (www.SFMatch.org), any candidate who wishes to become a fellow at one of our sites must do so through the match. All candidates must register with SFMatch.
Applicants must have completed a residency in neurology. Interested candidates are requested to submit their curriculum vitae and a personal statement explaining why they are interested in movement disorders. In addition, they are asked to submit letters from at least three individuals who know them well and who can describe the candidate as a person, a physician, and as a potential clinical or basic science investigator. All foreign graduates are requested to provide all necessary documentation to be in full compliance with the current requirements and regulations of BCM and the TSBME. Candidates should forward the requested materials to:
Joseph Jankovic, M.D.
Department of Neurology
Baylor College of Medicine
6550 Fannin, Suite 1801
Houston, Texas 77030
Foreign medical graduates should review the current policy regarding their qualifications regarding their visa status at: http://www.ecfmg.org. For further information, contact:
International Services Office
Division of Human Resources
Baylor College of Medicine
Houston, Texas 77030
Once accepted to the MDFTP an appointment letter is issued by the director of the program and the candidates are instructed to register with departmental administrator and enroll with the BCM GME office as a PGY V resident (also called a Fellow) and register with the GME office of The Methodist Hospital and St. Luke's Episcopal Hospital to obtain an ID badge get computer passwords. There will be an orientation by BCM before July 1 about MDFTP immediately after July 1.
Goals and Objectives
To become experienced in the clinical recognition of various disorders of movement, including Parkinson's disease and related neurodegenerative disorders, Huntington disease, Tourette syndrome, tremors, chorea, athetosis, dystonia, ballism, myoclonus, tics, spasticity, rigidity, restless legs syndrome, and other motor disorders.
- To evaluate primarily new patients in the clinic and in the hospital and provide follow-up information to referring physicians, describing our findings and therapeutic recommendations.
- To gain an understanding of the biochemical, pharmacologic, genetic, and physiologic mechanisms of the various movement disorders.
- To learn about therapeutic approaches used to alleviate these disorders, including developing skills in botulinum toxin injections and programming patients after deep brain stimulation surgery.
- To become familiar with various clinical rating scales and videotape protocols.
- To develop and manage a computer database for various movement disorders and research projects.
- To participate in ongoing clinical research projects conducted in the BCM Movement Disorders Clinic.
- To review literature, participate in, conduct, and prepare educational material (e.g. videotapes), for video rounds, movement disorder conferences, journal clubs and other educational activities.
- To prepare abstracts and scientific papers and to present research data at scientific meetings.
- To prepare research grant proposals for possible funding by NIH and other granting agencies and foundations.
- To analyze, summarize, and critique published articles.
- To work with the movement disorder nurse coordinators and other research staff in facilitating various research studies.
- To videotape patients and participate in specimen collections (CSF, blood, urine).
- To evaluate patients on the consultation service.
- To perform pre-operative and post-operative assessments on patients undergoing surgical interventions.
- To acquire skills in clinical research techniques and in designing drug trials and experimental therapies of movement disorders. These include:
- Learning basic skills in data management and statistical analysis.
- Learning how to critically review research literature.
- Learning Good Clinical Practice and fundamentals of IRB, FDA, and other regulatory requirements.
- Learning how to design and complete case report forms, consent forms, study budget, set up regulatory binder, manage study drug and supplies, and prepare for monitoring visits.
- Learn how to detect, record and report adverse events.
- Participate in investigators' meetings.