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Pediatric Orthopedic Surgery Fellowship

Overview: Pediatric Orthopaedic Surgery Fellowship

The Pediatric Orthopaedic Surgery Fellowship at Shriners Hospitals for Children – Northern California and UC Davis Children's Hospital offers an in-depth, hands-on exposure to all aspects of pediatric orthopaedics across both high-volume centers. The fellow closely mentored by eleven pediatric orthopaedic surgery staff. A flexible schedule allows for dividing time between complex elective pediatric orthopaedics and spine surgery at Shriners Hospitals for Children - Northern California, and elective and urgent pediatric orthopaedics at UC Davis Children's Hospital and its Level I Trauma Center.
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Dr. Vanna Rocchi:
The fellowship that you choose to go to is going to match you the best, and I without a doubt can say that I would choose this fellowship again and again.

Dr. Vedant Kulkarni:
The ideal pediatric orthopedic fellowship program provides the full breadth of experience that a fellow might experience in independent practice, but also gives them the depth so that they can become a subspecialist in an area of their interest. And that's really what the Shriners and UC Davis Pediatric Orthopedic Fellowship does. The fellowship provides a tremendous amount of flexibility. We intentionally have just one fellow a year for 11 staff, and many of the staff have practices both at UC Davis and at Shriners. That really allows a fellow to tailor their experience even on a day-to-day, on a week-to-week level, so that they're seeing the most beneficial case for their education.

Dr. Jon Davids:
The fellowship program is embedded into the broader program here at Shriners, and the institution's mission really has three elements. One is taking care of children. The second is performing research, and the third is training healthcare professionals. And so the fellow is involved in all three of those elements during their time here with us.

Dr. Brian Haus:
The benefit of the relationship between the two institutions is that the fellow gets a really full experience. UC Davis is a very busy Level I Trauma Center. It's the main trauma center in Northern California, all the way up until the middle of Oregon, and then all the way through Nevada.

Dr. Michelle James:
The strengths of our program are the teaching ability of the faculty.

Dr. Jon Davids:
Any child who is having surgery to improve their ability to walk will have a gait study beforehand. The data is analyzed and interpreted by a multidisciplinary team. When the child comes to surgery, we review the data in the conference to justify why we are doing what we are doing. And a number of our previous fellows have developed a passion for it during their fellowship, and have gone on to jobs at other children's hospitals where they have started gait labs of their own.

Dr. Brian Haus:
Another thing that makes our fellowship very strong is our sports experience. Myself and Dr. Friel, we're both specifically fellowship trained in sports medicine. We do as complex as they get that you would get in a sports fellowship. You're going to get that as part of your peds fellowship. So our fellows come out of here, if they're interested in sports, they come out and they can do pretty much everything.

Dr. Vedant Kulkarni:
The minimum requirements for graduation from a Pediatric Orthopedic Society of North America accredited fellowship like ours is 250 cases per year. And our fellows are able to vastly exceed that number of cases, going upwards of nearly 400 cases or above during their fellowship year. Among our 11 faculty, each of them has a wealth of subspecialty experience. So that case number not only reflects a large volume of cases, it reflects a high level of complexity. And that is so important as they leave here, to have had experience with the most complex cases, so that they're able to hit the ground running from day one in their practice.

Fellow and Attending Perspectives: Pediatric Orthopedic Surgery Fellowship

The Pediatric Orthopedic Surgery Fellowship at the Shriners Children's Northern California and UC Davis Children’s Hospital offers in-depth, hands-on exposure to all aspects of pediatric orthopedic care at two high-volume centers. The fellow will be closely mentored by 11 pediatric orthopedic surgeons and will experience a flexible schedule that allows for complex, elective pediatric orthopedic and spine surgeries at Shriners Children's, and elective and urgent pediatric orthopedic surgeries at UC Davis Children's Hospital, a Level I Trauma Center. The fellowship is accredited by the Pediatric Orthopaedic Society of North America (POSNA).
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Abby Howenstein, M.D.:
It was really the wide scope of things that they offer here. They have specialists for everything. And then the partnership with UC Davis with a level one trauma center right across the street. I was able to do as much trauma as I wanted, see everything from limb deformity to hip preservation to general pediatric orthopedics. So really everything was offered and so many attendings offered me the opportunity to see so many different points of view and ways to manage different conditions.

Michelle James, M.D.:
Our partnership with UC Davis is absolutely essential to our function. It started in the mid 1990s with a group of people who had a really amazing vision of how Shriners could partner with UC Davis on, as we say, both sides of the street. It has grown, it has changed, but it still persists as a, I think, almost unique advantage to both institutions.

Claire Manske, M.D.:
Between the two institutions there's nothing in pediatric orthopedics that you're not going to see. It's an incredibly broad and diverse patient population that we serve. Both sides of the street, meaning UC Davis and Shriners Hospital really are experts in taking care of those broad, diverse conditions.

Holly Lesikar, M.D.:
It's a really unique fellowship and I think that's because oftentimes you have a place like Shriners where you have all the zebras and you have some of the most unique pediatric orthopedic conditions. And that's what you're doing day to day and that's all you see. And sometimes that comes with a lower volume. When you combine it with the busiest level one trauma center in California, it becomes all of a sudden a incredibly high volume program with not just the zebras, but the day to day things that you're going to be seeing in any sort of practice that you go into.

Abby Howenstein, M.D.:
Every subspecialty represented, and there's really a thought leader in all of pediatric orthopedics represented in each one of those. And all of the attendings are really excited to have you around to teach you to offer up their experiences. And even beyond that, once I unfortunately have to leave, they have offered to always be willing and always be ready to answer any questions I might have going forward when I'm out on my own.

Joel Lerman, M.D.:
I have really have an incredible group of partners and really good teachers, really good surgeons. They're all people I'd be happy to send my own kid to.

Holly Lesikar, M.D.:
We see our roles as teachers in the fellowship program, basically to take somebody who is probably a phenomenal resident and been a great learner, their whole residency, and then build them into a pediatric orthopedic surgeon.

Nicole Friel, M.D.:
The fellows are totally dedicated to what they're doing. So we work with their residents as well, and they're wonderful to work with, but the fellows come in with usually a plethora of experience and they're great surgeons already and we're just building on top of that with, just kind of, their charisma to learn even more about our patients.

Claire Manske, M.D.:
They're just such eager learners, they come in just as wanting to be a sponge, wanting to just take advantage of everything this opportunity has to offer, everything this fellowship has to offer. I love when they get excited about taking care of the patients that we treat, really getting invested in the child's care and taking care of that patient and families.

Michelle James, M.D.:
They are far enough along in their training that they look at it with new eyes and might question things that we do, and sometimes those are really good questions and we need to reconsider the way that we take care of kids. So I enjoy it from both angles I learned from them and hopefully they learn from me.

Abby Howenstein, M.D.:
It's really great having so many attendings here who all really want you to be around and are really excited to teach you. And it offers a lot of flexibility, so it's kind of a choose your own adventure type situation. Where if there's something really exciting case I get to be there and there is no question about other people getting in the way or that type of thing. It's really a ability to know what I want to do with my future and make sure I'm getting that education. We have everything from hip arthroscopy, which isn't offered in many pediatric orthopedic fellowships to the P-A-O and many times on the same patient. And then we see the surgical hip dislocation side of things. So really any pathology involved that my need hip preservation is represented here. And again, I'm the only fellow so I'm involved in all of those cases if I want to be.

Abby Howenstein, M.D.:
One of the beautiful things about Shriners is not only does it have a general pediatric orthopedics base, but it also has the once in a career type cases that come along and you get to see those multiple times per year. So, being able to treat the really crazy conditions helps me be ready for the general stuff that I will probably see once I get out into practice.

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Overview: Pediatric Orthopaedic Surgery Fellowship
5:34
Fellow and Attending Perspectives: Pediatric Orthopedic Surgery Fellowship

Overview

The Pediatric Orthopedic Fellowship brochure provides in-depth detail of our program.

The Shriners Children’s and UC Davis Children’s Hospital Pediatric Orthopedic Surgery Fellowship is the oldest fellowship in Northern California, and has trained fellows for academic and private practice since 2009.

The fellow’s flexible schedule allows for complex, elective pediatric orthopedic and spine surgeries at Shriners Children's, and elective and urgent pediatric orthopedic surgeries at UC Davis Children's Hospital – a Level I Trauma Center. The fellowship is accredited by the Pediatric Orthopaedic Society of North America (POSNA) and accepts one fellow per year through the Orthopaedic Fellowship Match administered by SF Match.

With full access to pediatric and young adult pathology through both institutions, the fellow will be proficient in the full breadth and depth of pediatric orthopedics including:

  • Trauma and infection
  • Infant, child and young adult hip surgeries, including childhood acetabular osteotomies, peri-acetabular osteotomy and surgical hip dislocation
  • Pediatric and adolescent sports, including cartilage preservation, physeal-sparing ligament reconstructions, and advanced arthroscopy of the hip and ankle
  • Limb deformity, including intra-medullary and frame-based lengthening and deformity correction
  • Cerebral palsy, neuro-orthopedics and 3D gait analysis
  • Limb deficiencies and prosthetics
  • Adolescent, early onset, and congenital scoliosis and spine surgery
  • Upper extremity and brachial plexus birth palsy

Fellowship Application

The Pediatric Orthopedic Surgery Fellowship at Shriners Children's Northern California and UC Davis Children’s Hospital accepts one fellow per year through the SF Match and is 12 months in duration, beginning August 1 and ending July 31. Compensation is commensurate with a PGY-6 salary (approximately $78,000) with full benefits for the fellow and dependents. Upon acceptance to the fellowship through the SF Match and prior to the start of the fellowship year, our fellowship coordinator will guide the fellow through the process of obtaining a California medical license and a California fluoroscopy supervisor and operator permit. We encourage graduates from U.S. medical schools and U.S. orthopedic surgery residencies to apply for the program. We unfortunately can’t accept any foreign medical graduates at this time.

For more information, you may contact:

Laura Dayton
Coordinator, Pediatric Orthopedic Surgery Fellowship

Shriners Children's Northern California
Department of Orthopedic Surgery
2425 Stockton Blvd.
Sacramento, CA 95817

Phone: 916-453-2049
Email: ldayton@shrinenet.org

Faculty 

In addition to general pediatric orthopedics, our 11 faculty members have a broad range of sub-specialty interests, including:

Jon Davids, M.D.: Cerebral Palsy & Neuro-Orthopedics, Foot/ankle
Nicole Friel, M.D.: Sports
Brian Haus, M.D.: Sports, Young Adult Hip, Trauma
Michelle James, M.D.: Upper Extremity & Hand
Vedant Kulkarni, M.D.: Cerebral Palsy & Neuro-Orthopedics, Foot/ankle, Hip
Joel Lerman, M.D.: Early Onset Spine, Clubfoot, Limb Deficiency
Holly Leshikar, M.D.: Young Adult Hip, Trauma, Limb Deformity
Claire Manske, M.D.: Upper Extremity & Hand
Candice McDaniel, M.D.: Trauma
Deb Templeton, M.D.: Spine, Clubfoot
Amanda Whitaker, M.D.: Cerebral Palsy & Neuro-Orthopedics, Limb Deformity, Clubfoot, Trauma

 

Jon Davids
Jon R. Davids, MD
Orthopaedic Surgery
Orthopedics
Jon Davids
Jon R. Davids, MD

Jon Robert Davids, M.D., assistant chief of orthopedics at Shriners Children's Northern California, is an internationally recognized pediatric orthopedic surgeon noted for his work in treating children with cerebral palsy.

He served as clinical professor of orthopaedic surgery at Duke University Medical Center, the University Of South Carolina School Of Medicine, and as chief of staff at Shriners Children's Greenville, prior to his appointment at Shriners Children's Northern California in August 2011.

Dr. Davids graduated Magna Cum Laude from Brown University before earning his Doctor of Medicine at Harvard Medical School, where he was a member of the Aesculapian Club and president of the Harvard Chapter of the American Medical Students Association. He completed his Residency in Orthopaedic Surgery at the University of Colorado Affiliated Hospitals and a Fellowship in Pediatric Orthopaedics at Children’s Hospital and Health Center at the University of California, San Diego. Dr. Davids is a member of the Pediatric Orthopaedic Society of North America, International Pediatric Orthopaedic Think Tank, the American Orthopaedic Association, the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons, the American Board of Orthopaedic Surgeons, Gait & Clinical Movement Analysis Society, and the American Academy of Cerebral Palsy and Developmental Medicine.

Friel Nichole
Nicole A. Friel, MD
Orthopaedic Surgery
Sports Medicine
Orthopedics
Sports Medicine
Friel Nichole
Nicole A. Friel, MD

Nicole A. Friel, M.D., MS, is an orthopedic surgeon and sports medicine specialist with Shriners Children's Northern California. Dr. Friel is dedicated to providing world-class care to children in Northern California. She specializes in pediatric and adolescent sports medicine, taking care of non-operative and operative conditions, including performing arthroscopic and open procedures on the knee and shoulder. She has particular interest in shoulder instability, knee ligament reconstruction and cartilage restoration.

Dr. Friel earned her medical degree at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago, where she graduated with honors. While completing a residency in orthopedic surgery at University of Pittsburgh, she was awarded the most outstanding graduating chief resident award. She completed a fellowship in sports medicine and shoulder surgery at Rush University Medical Center. On the academic front, Dr. Friel has authored multiple peer-reviewed manuscripts in major orthopedic and sports medicine journals and also numerous book chapters. She loves teaching medical students and residents who aspire to be successful physicians.

Dr. Friel enjoys taking care of all her patients, including many athletes. She has served as the team physician for multiple high school and collegiate teams, and has assisted in the care of professional team members, including the Pittsburgh Penguins, Chicago White Sox and Chicago Bulls. Her primary goal is to find the best way to return her young patients to being active and healthy.

Brian Haus
Brian M. Haus, MD
Orthopaedic Surgery
Orthopedics
Sports Medicine
Brian Haus
Brian M. Haus, MD

Brian Haus, M.D., is a pediatric orthopedic surgeon and sports medicine specialist with Shriners Children's Northern California. Dr. Haus is a native of Sacramento and is dedicated to providing world-class care to children in his community.

After graduating from Stanford, Dr. Haus completed residency at the Harvard Orthopedic Residency Program. This was followed by a two year-long fellowships at Boston Children's Hospital/Harvard Medical School; one in pediatric orthopedic surgery and another in pediatric and adolescent sports medicine.

Currently, he is the only board-certified pediatric orthopedist in Northern California who is also double board certified in sports medicine. As such, he has expertise in managing the most complex sports injuries affecting young athletes. He is also one of the only surgeons in the U.S. who is trained and experienced in both arthroscopic and open hip preservation.

He has extensive experience in treating traumatic fractures and sports injuries of the hip, shoulder, knee and ankle in adolescents and children using open and arthroscopic techniques, including cartilage restoration. He also performs hip preservation surgery in young patients with complex hip disorders, including hip arthroscopy, periacetabular osteotomy (PAO) and open surgical dislocation.

In addition to serving as chief of pediatric orthopedic surgery at UC Davis, Dr. Haus is also an associate professor of orthopedic surgery at the UC Davis School of Medicine. He is also co-director of pediatric sports medicine and joint preservation at Shriners Children's Northern California.

James Michelle
Michelle A. James, MD
Orthopaedic Surgery
Hand Surgery
Orthopedics
James Michelle
Michelle A. James, MD

Michelle James, M.D., works for Shriners Children's because she believes in the mission to care for children without regard for ability to pay, and to improve future care by teaching and performing research.

Dr. James is a pediatric hand surgeon, and the chief of orthopedics at Shriners Children's Sacramento. She is also a professor of clinical orthopedic surgery at UC Davis and UC San Francisco Medical Schools.

She joined Shriners Children's in 1991. Her father, who was her practice partner, had volunteered part-time at Shriners Children's for 20 years, and after she joined him in practice, they successfully applied for two new full-time positions at Shriners Children's. They felt very fortunate to work together for over 20 years.

Dr. James cares for children with congenital hand malformations, neuromuscular conditions (brachial plexus birth injury, spinal cord injury and cerebral palsy) and post-traumatic hand deformities. Her greatest professional joy is learning from a child or parent in which an intervention has improved their ability to accomplish a task that is important to them.

She is also a clinical researcher, serving as principal investigator for seven funded studies of children's hand function. She has published over 100 articles in peer-reviewed journals. She teaches medical students, residents and fellows, and has had the pleasure of being a visiting professor many times, nationally and internationally.

Although she loves her work for Shriners Children's, her most fulfilling professional role has been as a volunteer hand surgeon at a pediatric hospital in Nicaragua, where she traveled twice per year for 10 years, along with multiple friends and colleagues, caring for hundreds of children and successfully training a local orthopedist to become a pediatric hand surgeon.

Dr. James met her amazing husband in high school. They have been married for a very long time, and have two wonderful adult daughters.

Kulkarni Vedant
Vedant A. Kulkarni, MD
Orthopaedic Surgery
Orthopedics
Kulkarni Vedant
Vedant A. Kulkarni, MD

Vedant Kulkarni, M.D., is a board-certified orthopedic surgeon at Shriners Children's Northern California and a clinical assistant professor at UC Davis School of Medicine. His work is devoted to treating children with all types of pediatric orthopedic conditions and injuries. He has a special interest in neuromuscular disorders such as cerebral palsy and is part of a multidisciplinary team that is devoted to excellence in clinical care and research.

After graduating from Stanford University School of Medicine, Dr. Kulkarni trained in orthopedic surgery and clinical research at UC San Diego Medical Center and Rady Children's Hospital. He subsequently completed an advanced fellowship in pediatric orthopedics and scoliosis at the Texas Scottish Rite Hospital for Children, where he gained expertise in cerebral palsy treatment, child and young adult hip preservation, limb deformity treatment, clubfoot and scoliosis.

Dr. Kulkarni has presented his research nationally and published scientific articles in the Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery, Journal of the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, Journal of Pediatric Orthopedics, and Journal of Neuroscience Methods. He is a member of the Pediatric Orthopedic Society of North America, American Academy of Cerebral Palsy and Developmental Medicine, and American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons. He is actively involved in teaching and mentoring medical students, residents and fellows.

Lerman Joel Lerman
Joel A. Lerman, MD
Orthopaedic Surgery
Orthopedics
Spine and Spinal Cord
Lerman Joel Lerman
Joel A. Lerman, MD

Joel Lerman, M.D., is an orthopedic surgeon at Shriners Children's Northern California and associate professor in the department of orthopedic surgery at the University of California, Davis, School of Medicine. An honors graduate of Stanford University School of Medicine, Dr. Lerman practiced at Shriners Children's Houston and was assistant professor of orthopedic surgery at Baylor College of Medicine before relocating to Northern California.

Board certified by the American Board of Orthopedic Surgery and the National Board of Medical Examiners, Dr. Lerman is also licensed by the Medical Board of California, Texas State Board of Medical Examiners and Arizona Board of Medical Examiners.

Dr. Lerman's professional affiliations include the Association of Children's Prosthetics and Orthotics Clinics, American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons, Pediatric Orthopedic Society of North America and Scoliosis Research Society.

Leshikar Holly
Holly B. Leshikar, MD
Orthopaedic Surgery
Orthopedics
Leshikar Holly
Holly B. Leshikar, MD

Holly Leshikar, M.D., is an orthopedic surgeon at Shriners Children's Northern California and assistant professor at the University of California, Davis School of Medicine.

Manske Claire
Mary Claire B. Manske, MD
Orthopaedic Surgery
Hand Surgery
Orthopedics
Manske Claire
Mary Claire B. Manske, MD

Claire Manske, M.D., is committed to providing compassionate, high-quality care to patients and their families. She believes in educating patients about their condition in order to develop an individualized treatment plan that helps them meet their goals and return to the activities they most enjoy.

Dr. Manske is a pediatric orthopedic hand surgeon at Shriners Children's Northern California. She specializes in congenital, traumatic and neuromuscular (cerebral palsy, spinal cord injury and brachial plexus palsy) conditions of the hand and upper extremity, with a particular interest in brachial plexus birth palsy. Her research focuses on optimizing diagnosis, treatment and outcomes of brachial plexus palsy and congenital hand differences. She has presented her research nationally and internationally and published scientific articles in multiple peer-reviewed medical journals.

Candice McDaniel
Candice O. McDaniel, MD
Orthopaedic Surgery
Orthopedics
Candice McDaniel
Candice O. McDaniel, MD

Candice O. McDaniel, M.D., is a pediatric orthopedic surgeon with Shriners Children's Northern California specializing in the treatment and care of children with skeletal trauma, clubfoot deformity, lower extremity sports injuries and scoliosis.

She is a member of the Pediatric Orthopedic Society of North America and the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons.

templeton Debra
Debra J. Templeton, MD
Orthopaedic Surgery
Orthopedics
Sports Medicine
Spine and Spinal Cord
Urology
templeton Debra
Debra J. Templeton, MD

Debra Templeton, M.D., focuses exclusively on pediatric orthopedics, which includes reconstruction, scoliosis, sports and trauma. She has served as a consultant editor for the Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery and the Journal of the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons. As a fellow, she received the Boone Pickens Outstanding Fellow Research award. She was also honored with the Wyeth Resident Research award.

While in medical school, Dr. Templeton was a member of the United States Olympic Development Track and Field Team and received the United States Olympic Committee Scholar Athlete award. Dr. Templeton is actively involved in pediatric trauma care at UC Davis. She serves as a member of the pediatric multidisciplinary trauma committee and the pediatric trauma quality control committee. Dr. Templeton is a fellow of the American Academy of Orthopedic Surgeons and a member of the Pediatric Orthopedic Society of North America, for which she has served on several national committees.

Amanda Whitaker
Amanda T. Whitaker, MD
Pediatric Orthopaedic Surgery
Orthopedics
Amanda Whitaker
Amanda T. Whitaker, MD

Amanda T. Whitaker, M.D., is a pediatric orthopedic surgeon at Shriners Children's Northern California and UC Davis Health. She is from central Ohio. She received her undergraduate degree in biology through the Honors Program at the University of Kentucky and completed her medical degree at the Cleveland Clinic Lerner College of Medicine at Case Western Reserve University with qualifications in biomedical research. Her residency training was conducted at the University of California San Francisco where she completed the six-year research track. She went to Harvard Combined/Boston Children’s Hospital for her pediatric orthopedic fellowship. After fellowship, she practiced orthopedic surgery for five years at Nationwide Children’s Hospital in Columbus, Ohio, taking care of children and adults with cerebral palsy, clubfoot, trauma, vascular malformations, osteogeneisis imperfecta and macrodactyly.

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