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Headache Medicine Fellowship Curriculum

Schedule & Curriculum

Core Curriculum

The core curriculum delivers the basic knowledge required and ensures the fellow’s competency in the six Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) key focus areas for performance.

  • Patient Care
  • Medical Knowledge
  • Practice-Based Learning and Improvement
  • Interpersonal and Communication Skills
  • Professionalism
  • Systems Based Practice

The fellow sees patients at the SwedishAmerican Neuro and Headache Clinic four days per week. The clinic is located on the hospital campus making headache consultations in the inpatient and emergency department settings readily available. Procedures are performed in the clinic and in the radiology department. Didactic sessions are offered one day per week when additional work on research, quality improvement or academic study work also occurs. Elective time is available up to eight weeks per year. The fellow is expected to present at least one resident lecture per year and one Grand Rounds presentation per year. Additional presentations are encouraged.

Program Goals:

  1. To graduate a fellow with the advanced knowledge and skillsets required to provide effective state of the art headache medicine care for patients in the ambulatory and inpatient settings.
  2. To impart an understanding of the epidemiologic and socioeconomic factors that affect patients with headache disorders.
  3. To foster basic quality improvement and research skills necessary for improving patient care and for making contributions to the field of headache medicine.

Program Objectives:

  1. To master the anatomy and pathophysiology of headache and related disorders.
  2. To accurately identify and classify primary and secondary headaches
  3. To gain proficiency in multiple modalities for the treatment of headache and facial pain including the use of prophylactic and therapeutic medications, behavioral and non-pharmacologic modalities, and physical techniques such as injections, physical therapy, and exercise.
  4. To gain proficiency in teaching headache medicine to medical students, residents, medical and support staff, and in counseling patients.

The ACGME has established Milestones for its ACGME fellowship programs to gauge the levels of competency achieved by the fellow throughout training. The framework for the competency assessment is built on the six ACGME core competencies; patient care, medical knowledge, practice-based learning and improvement, interpersonal and communication skills, professionalism, and systems-based practice. The measures of accomplishment and success will vary by the objectives used for each core competency.


While the fellow is expected to work hard while on duty, we value and encourage a healthy work/life balance. The fellow normally works from Monday to Friday. The fellow is encouraged to enjoy vacation time and many evenings and weekends enjoying the region and/or traveling.

Suggested Rotation Schedule

Block Rotations:

Each block rotation is one half day per week for 2-8 weeks in length.

  • Concussion Care: 4-week rotation
  • Neurology: Two 4-week rotations
  • Ophthalmology: Two 2-week rotation
  • Radiology: Two 2-week rotation
  • ENT: Two 2-week rotation
  • Audiology/Vestibular: Two 2-week rotation
  • Physical Therapy: 2-week rotation
  • Pain Management: 2-week rotation
  • Neurosurgery: Two 4-week rotations, as cases present.

Weekly Longitudinal Experiences:

  • Ambulatory Neuro/Headache Clinic: Six half days per week of ambulatory care for headache and facial pain patients based at the Neuro & Headache Center and inpatient headache consultations at SwedishAmerican Hospital and Emergency Department all part of UW Health.
  • Family Medicine Clinic: One half day a week spent at the Miles Square L. P. Johnson Family Health Center seeing family medicine patients.
  • Dedicated Scholarship, Research, and Didactic Time: Every Wednesday, both half days are allocated for weekly didactics, journal rounds, clinical and non-clinical teachings and time for research with hopeful submission for publication and more.


Education is done in a wide range of formal and informal settings. Expect to be an active participant and teacher!


The Headache Medicine Fellowship Program received a three-year provisional accreditation from the United Council for Neurologic Subspecialties.

UCNS-accredited programs demonstrate that they meet the standards of graduate medical education excellence set by the UCNS and the subspecialty experts of each of the UCNS-recognized subspecialties.