Cecile Ferrando, MD, MPH
Fellowship Program Director
The Female Pelvic Medicine and Reconstructive Surgery (FPMRS) Fellowship at Cleveland Clinic’s mission is to provide fellows with advanced training in the care of patients with female pelvic floor disorders, and to provide an in-depth experience in clinical and investigative work sufficient to allow pursuit of an academic career and leadership within Female Pelvic Medicine and Reconstructive Surgery.
The Cleveland Clinic Center for Female Pelvic Medicine and Reconstructive Surgery provides a formal organization for the collaborative relationships between specialists caring for women with urinary incontinence, pelvic organ prolapse, defecatory, voiding disorders dysfunction, and related conditions. This broad-based exposure to clinical Urogynecology/Reconstructive Pelvic Surgery is marked by progressive responsibility both in the clinic and hospital. The fellows work with six FPMRS specialists with different areas of expertise, colorectal surgeons recognized for their work in anal incontinence and defecatory dysfunction, and with nationally recognized urologists who specialize in female urology and voiding disorders.
Tommaso Falcone, MD
Chief of Staff and Chief Academic Officer
Cleveland Clinic London
"Our collaborative approach, fostered in interdisciplinary care centers, consistently improves clinical outcomes, increases patient satisfaction and stimulates research. Our Centers of Excellence include gynecologic oncology, female pelvic medicine and reconstructive surgery, reproductive endocrinology and infertility, menstrual and fibroid treatment and maternal-fetal medicine."
Quality counts when referring patients to hospitals and physicians. Cleveland Clinic is ranked as one of the nation's top hospitals by U.S. News & World Report. Designed for a healthcare provider audience, the Outcomes information contain a summary of our surgical and medical trends and approaches, data on patient volume and outcomes, and a review of new technologies and innovations.
The Female Pelvic Medicine and Reconstructive Surgery (FPMRS) fellows are marked by the strong clinical and research exposure that they receive during the 3 years within the program. Our large volume of patients enables the fellows to develop a broad base of teaching when it comes to the medical students and residents that rotate on the benign gynecologic service. During their time within the fellowship, they will be assessed by the program director and other faculty so that their progress allows them to reach their own personal goals during their time at Cleveland Clinic. The Female Pelvic Medicine and Reconstructive Surgery fellowship has become ACGME certified as of 2012 with the enactment of the milestones and case log system which enables the fellows to diagnose and develop their own personal portfolio before they begin their career after their fellowship.
During the time of your Female Pelvic Medicine and Reconstructive Surgery Fellowship your rotation will include:
- 19 months of Female Pelvic Medicine and Reconstructive Surgery
- 2 months of Female Urology
- 2 months of Colorectal Surgery
- 1 month of Minimally Invasive Gynecologic Surgery
- 1 month of Physical Therapy (during FPMRS)
- 12 months of Research (protected)
Female Pelvic Medicine and Reconstructive Surgery
Our large clinical volume provides a broad-based exposure to clinical Urogynecology/Reconstructive Pelvic Surgery marked by progressive responsibility in both the outpatient and inpatient settings. Clinical experiences take place at the Cleveland Clinic Main Campus, Hillcrest Hospital, and Fairview Hospital. The outpatient experience includes initial examinations, urodynamic assessments, and management planning. The inpatient experience is comprised of surgical cases and perioperative management.
There are 3 FPMRS rotations that fellows participate in during their 3 years of fellowship. The rotations are primarily divided by location (Main Campus, East and West). During each rotation, the fellow works directly with 2 or more of our FPMRS specialists.
- Main Campus: During this rotation the fellow will have a 4 week dedicated block in the inpatient and outpatient urogynecology and female pelvic medicine and reconstructive surgery service at the main campus of Cleveland Clinic. During this rotation, the fellow is able to spend 20% of their time pursuing scholarly activities.
- East FPMRS (Hillcrest Hospital and Main Campus): During this rotation the fellow will have a 4 week dedicated block in the inpatient and outpatient urogynecology and female pelvic medicine and reconstructive surgery service at Hillcrest Hospital and at the Main Campus of Cleveland Clinic. During this rotation, the fellow is able to spend 20% of their time pursuing scholarly activities.
- West FPMRS (Fairview Hospital and Main Campus): During this rotation the fellow will have a 4 week dedicated block in the inpatient and outpatient urogynecology and female pelvic medicine and reconstructive surgery service at Fairview Hospital and the main campus of Cleveland Clinic. During this rotation, the fellow is able to spend 20% of their time pursuing scholarly activities.
This is a dedicated 4 week block on the inpatient and outpatient Female Urology service at main campus. Fellows will be integrated with the Urology team where the clinical sites primarily include outpatient clinics and ambulatory procedure suites in the Glickman Urologic Institute.
This is a dedicated 4 week block providing experience in outpatient and inpatient colorectal surgery. While on this rotation the fellow will spend time in the anal physiology laboratory observing and performing anal manometry, electrophysiology, and endoanal ultrasound. They will also get a chance to spend time in the outpatient colorectal clinic and inpatient/ambulatory colorectal surgical service.
While on an FPRMS rotation the fellow will get exposure to pelvic floor physical therapy by observing and experiencing pelvic floor physical therapy sessions and behavioral therapies for pelvic floor disorders.
This is a 4 week block dedicated to the fundamentals of designing and administering research. This concentrated period of time should be used to develop projects, collect data, analyze results, and write presentations and manuscripts. Fellows are permitted to use one of their research blocks for elective time to broaden their FPMRS experience as it relates to their research and clinical interests.
Conferences, Seminars and Lectures
The FPMRS fellows participate in various monthly and weekly educational conferences including the following:
Ob/Gyn Grand Rounds (weekly) – The FPMRS fellows participate in weekly departmental Grand Rounds. Included in these conferences are monthly GYN Quality Assurance and Improvement meetings. The fellows actively participate in these conferences and present all pertinent patient materials. The fellows serve as the Grand Rounds Presenter at least twice during their three years (2nd and 3rd year).
Pelvic Floor Conference (monthly) – The Pelvic Floor Conferences are attended by the Urogynecology, Female Urology, Colo-rectal Surgery faculty and their fellows and residents, along with interested members of the Departments of Biomedical Engineering, Quantitative Health Sciences and Physical Therapy. These conferences include subspecialist guest lectures, journal club, and case conferences. Fellows are asked to moderate the monthly journal clubs. Recent topics have included: diagnosis and management of vulvar disorders, assessment and treatment of chronic pelvic pain, management of mesh complications, transgender surgery, postpartum perineal care, surgical planning for pelvic organ prolapse, updates in treatment for urinary incontinence.
Fellow Seminar (weekly) – The fellows participate in a weekly fellow seminar dedicated to urogynecology topic reviews. The goal of these didactics is to cover all of the FPMRS objectives and to ensure that fellows are well prepared for their boards at the end of fellowship.
Research Meeting (monthly) – The fellows and faculty participate in a monthly research meeting to discuss new project ideas as well as ongoing projects. The focus of these meetings is on research design, statistics, grantsmanship, and research management.
Case Conference (monthly) – The fellows and faculty participate in a monthly M&M case conference for all urogynecology cases. At this conference, fellows present challenging cases and the goal is to facilitate group discussion to learn how to approach these types of cases.
The fellows may participate in and share teaching responsibilities in the medical student core lecture program and the weekly Resident Education Conferences during which a core-curriculum of material is presented on an annual basis. Additional conferences include those in the Minimally-Invasive Surgery Center and selected conferences in the Departments of Urology and Colorectal Surgery, as time permits. These programs are offered throughout the academic year.
The fellows actively participate in the Annual Cleveland Society of Obstetricians and Gynecologists Research Day and in appropriate departmental postgraduate courses. The fellows submit their current research for presentation in the form of poster presentations or oral presentations at these meetings.
Fellows attend a minimum of one meeting per year (more if they have accepted research presentations) and have the opportunity to attend the Annual Meetings of the Society of Gynecologic Surgeons, the American Urogynecology Society, American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, Association for Advanced Gynecologic Laparoscopy, and the Society of Urodynamics, Female Pelvic Medicine & Urogenital Reconstruction, and many others. Active participation, including presentation, is encouraged at all meetings to promote the fellow’s experience and expertise in scientific meeting participation.
All fellows take two graduate level courses as part of their fellowship. These courses, including Biostatistics and Epidemiology, are taught by faculty of the Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine and Case Western Reserve Univiersity and are typically taken in the first and second year of fellowship.
Female Pelvic Medicine and Reconstructive Surgery Staff
Class of 2022
Viviana Casas-Puig, MD
Medical School: Ponce School of Medicine
Residency: University of Puerto Rico, School of Medicine
Angela Yuan, MD
Medical School: University of Connecticut School of Medicine
Residency: Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center
Class of 2021
Olivia Chang, MD, MPH
Medical School: Tulane University School of Medicine
Residency: Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, Boston, MA
Class of 2020
Lisa Caronia Hickman, MD
Medical School: The Ohio State University, Columbus, OH
Residency: Cleveland Clinic, Cleveland, OH
How to Apply
The Female Pelvic Medicine and Reconstructive Surgery Fellowship offers a rotation of 2-1-1categorical positions . All positions are filled through the National Residency Matching Program (NRMP) match. International applicants are invited to apply through the NRMP as well.
How to Apply
The Female Pelvic Medicine and Reconstructive Medicine Fellowship participates in the Electronic Residency Application Service (ERAS) for all positions. Our application requirements are the same as the standard ERAS application:
- Complete Application
- Personal Statement
- Medical Student Performance Evaluation (MSPE)
- Medical School Transcript
- USMLE Step I USMLE Step 2
- 3rd year CREOG score
- Three Letters of Recommendation (One of which has to be from your residency program director)
International Medical Graduates
Here are some frequently asked question by graduates of international medical school regarding the application process:
- U.S. clinical experience is preferred but not a requirement
- USMLE Step I
- USMLE Step 2
- 3rd year CREOG score
- Please review the ECFMG requirements for additional information
Our program will follow the AUGS Fellowship Training Committee’s recommended timeline with a deadline to apply of February 15, 2020.
Following the AUGS Fellowship Training Committee’s recommendation, offers for interviews will be made via ERAS on Monday, March 2, 2020. Interviews will be held on Tuesday, April 21 and Wednesday, April 22. If invited for an interview, please plan on being here all day. In most cases, interviews will be completed by 4 p.m. Applicants are invited and highly encouraged to attend a social dinner the evening before with our current fellows. Detailed information regarding the actual interview day, traveling to Cleveland, hotel accommodations, etc. will be provided to the applicant once the interview is confirmed.
For further questions please contact:
Morgan Cornell, MBA
Education Program Manager