Medicine Subspecialties

Medicine: Special Clinical Areas & Research

117 Clinical Cardiology-BMC (Menino Pavilion)

Once scheduled, a student will not be released from a cardiology elective unless a substitute is provided.

Instructor: Sheilah Bernard, M.D.

Location:Boston Medical Center (88 E. Newton St., Collamore Building, 7th Fl.)

Telephone: 638-8902- Rebecca Hall    email:

Number of Students: 2

Period to be offered: One month   (Elective is restricted to full four week block only.  There are no two week offerings)

Description of Elective:

During this clinical elective, the student will become a member of the Cardiology Consult Team comprised of a staff cardiologist,a cardiology fellow and one to three PGY-2’s. As an integral member of this team based at Menino Pavilion, the student will share in the responsibilities for patient evaluation, management and disposition. The aim of the elective will be to expose the student to a wide variety of cardiac patients. The fundamentals of the cardiac examination as well as therapeutics will be emphasized. The significance, usefulness and manner of performing special diagnostic studies including electrocardiograms, echocardiograms, exercise stress tests, holter monitors, nuclear scans and cardiac catheterizations will be taught and applied to patient care.

All students and residents are expected to develop competency in EKG reading offered during the rotation. By special arrangement, additional elective time can be provided for certain students with a special interest in arrhythmia, cardiomyopathy, echocardiography, stress testing or clinical research.

Teaching activities include:

1)Daily rounds with Staff Cardiologist

2)EKG reading

3)Cardiology Grand Rounds

4)Medical/Surgical Conference

5)Arrhythmia Conference

6)Imaging Conference

7)Research Conference

8)Cardiomyopathy Conference

9)Core Curriculum Conference


123.6 Medical Intensive Care Unit at the West Roxbury VA

Instructors: Jussi Saukkonen, M.D. and VA Pulmonary and Critical Care attending physicians


VA Boston Healthcare System

1400 VFW Parkway

West Roxbury, MA 02132

Telephone:1 857-203-6478 contact: Susan Cieri

Number of Students: One

Period to be offered: One Month

Description of Elective:

Students will actively participate in the care of critically ill patients with a variety of medical diseases. Daily rounds are made with discussion of latest pathophysiology and treatment. Night call responsibility is every third night. In general, the student is expected to shoulder a considerable amount of responsibility in regard to the admission and treatment of critically ill patients and perform as a member of the team. The West Roxbury VA is a combined Boston University and Harvard Medical School service.

Note: This elective requires completion of an additional VA Health System application and fingerprinting. Please obtain contact information from elective coordinator upon sign-up.


124.1 Elective in Vascular Medicine

Instructor: Robert Eberhardt, M.D.

Location: Boston Medical Center (C-703B)

Telephone: 638-8947-Sandra Vanaria

Number of Students: One

Period to be offered: One month

Description of Elective:

This is designed to be a comprehensive rotation in cardiovascular disorders with emphasis on vascular problems. Students will gain an exposure to the evaluation and management of vascular disorders affecting the arterial, venous, and lymphatic systems, as well as vasospastic disorders. Emphasis will be placed on learning the presentation, physical findings, diagnostics, and therapeutics. The indications, techniques, and interpretation of vascular studies will be taught. Students will be expected to fully participate in the clinical and educational activities including:

• Inpatient vascular medical consultations including cardiac consultation for vascular surgery

• Outpatient clinic, which includes new consultation and longitudinal care of patients with vascular disease

• Non-invasive vascular laboratory and peripheral interventional laboratory

• Vascular conferences including an interdisciplinary vascular conference and a vascular laboratory journal club

As mentioned above, there is heavy emphasis placed on a comprehensive cardiovascular approach to the vascular disease patient. Student can expect to be exposed to and provide care for many cardiac disorders, including coronary artery disease, heart failure, valvular heart disease, and arrhythmias, especially during the perioperative evaluation and management. This will include an understanding and application of the diagnostic cardiac studies, including electrocardiograms, echocardiograms, exercise and pharmacologic stress test, and cardiac catheterization.

*This elective will be offered January 2019-May 2019

127.8 Clinical Research Hypertension/Nephrology Elective

Instructor: Marc S Weinberg, MD, FACP, Chief of Nephrology, RWMC and Clinical Professor of Medicine, B.U.S.M.

Location: Providence, R.I. at our Hypertension/Research center at 125 Corliss Street, Providence, R.I., the site of our outpatient dialysis facility associated with Roger Williams Medical Center, a B.U.S.M. Affiliated program.

Telephone: (401) 861-7711

Number of students: 1-2

Period to be Offered: Three months is preferable but may be as little as one month at discretion of course manager.

Description of Elective: House officers in their medical residencies, fellows in training, medical students or undergraduate students demonstrating specific interests, will be allowed to enroll in this course after approval by the course director. Since clinical studies can be a large source of support for both academic and clinical research, this elective will teach all aspects of how to set-up and perform clinical trials. Individuals will be taught how to write and identify good clinical studies; and identify weaknesses in other trials written by the pharmaceutical industry. Emphasis will be on patient safety and identifying what trials you will be able to perform and complete concisely.

We will teach how to organize and integrate trials so that several can be performed at one time. Once a study is identified, each individual will be assigned to a primary program they are interested in. They will screen patients as required by the study. Students or physicians will be allowed to assume as much responsibility as is appropriate for their particular degree of education, supervised also by the course director.

How to interact with study clinical monitors and react to mild or significant adverse effects from drugs will be taught. Communicating this information to both pharmaceutical companies and Institutional Review Boards will be reviewed.

After data is collected and the study is completed, all students and physicians will present their research project at our nephrology research conferences. In addition they will be taught how to write a concise abstract, and send it to a national or international meeting for presentation and publication. Writing a complete paper will be stressed. Editorial assistance is provided by the course supervisor. Those medical and undergraduate students will be encouraged to present their work in their other related classes in main campus (we will assist in this effort.) Lastly, the economic feasibility of setting-up and directing their own center will be reviewed with each individual.

Contact information

Marc S Weinberg, MD, FACP or kininmd @

(401) 861-7711


128.1 Endocrinology, Diabetes and Nutrition

Instructors: Sonia Ananthakrishnan, M.D., Caroline M. Apovian, M.D., Alan Farwell, M.D., Shirin Haddady, M.D., Poorani Goundan, M.D., Sun Lee, M.D., Dong Wook Kim, M.D., Philip Knapp, M.D., Katherine Modzelewski, M.D. , Ivania Rizo, M.D., Devin Steenkamp, M.D., Sara Alexanian, M.D., Michael Holick, M.D., Ph.D., Nawfal Istfan, M.D., Ph.D., Stephanie Lee, M.D., Catherine Sullivan, M.D. and Elizabeth Pearce, M.D.

Location: Boston Medical Center-Doctor’s Office Building, 8th Floor, Suite 8100

Contact: Jim McCarthy

Telephone: (617) 638-8556

Number of Students: 2 (priority given to BU students)

Period to be offered: One Month

Description of Elective:

Students work closely with the faculty and fellows on the inpatient endocrine and diabetes consult services. They will see a wide variety of endocrine and weight management problems in the clinics. Two weeks will be spent on the inpatient diabetes team and 2 weeks on the endocrine consult team.  The consultation team provides help in the diagnosis and management of complex endocrine problems on the medical and surgical services. Formal rounds are made with the endocrine-attending physician or diabetes attending on a daily basis. In addition to inpatient rounds, students will have the opportunity to rotate in the outpatient clinics depending on workload and inpatient volume.  Students are required to attend weekly endocrine conferences which include guest lecturers, research conferences and fellow case presentations, and will be asked to present on an endocrine topic during their elective.


128.2 Obesity Medicine and Nutrition Support

Instructors: Caroline M. Apovian, M.D. and Dong Wook Kim, M.D.

Location: Boston Medical Center-Doctor’s Office Building, 8th Floor, Suite 801

Contact: James McCarthy   email:

Telephone: (617) 638-8556

Number of Students: One

Period to be offered: One Month

Description of Elective:

This elective provides “hands on” exposure to the problems of obesity and malnutrition in both inpatients and outpatients.  The Obesity Medicine and Nutrition Support rotation at Boston Medical Center is a 4 week rotation.

The students will gain experience managing individuals with morbid obesity by working in the Nutrition and Weight Management Clinic with nutrition physicians and dietitians.  The students will get an overview of the medical management and surgical treatment options available for the morbidly obese patient.  This includes an introduction to the comprehensive pre and post-operative management of these patients via clinic experience and inpatient follow-up where applicable.  The option is available, based on student interest, to observe Culinary Nutrition Medicine classes in BMC’s Nutrition Resource Kitchen with a professional chef/dietitian.

The student will work closely with members of the multidisciplinary Nutrition Support Team.  This includes an attending physician, clinical fellows, dietitians, pharmacists and research staff.  Participation in daily patient and teaching rounds will be expected.  Consultations will be undertaken with the supervision of a fellow or the Nutrition Support attending on service.


129.1    Transgender Medicine

Department of Endocrinology-Boston University School of Medicine

Instructors: Catherine Sullivan, M.D., Endocrinology, Katherine Mozdelewski, M.D., Endocrinology, Poorani Goundan, M.D., Endocrinology, Jennifer Siegel, M.D., Primary Care, Mandy Coles, M.D., Adolescent Medicine, Jeffrey H. Spiegel, M.D., Plastic Surgery and Pam Klein, RN, Primary Care-Medicine

Contact: Jim McCarthy -Boston Medical Center-Doctor’s Office Building, 8th Floor, Suite 8100   email:

Telephone: 617 638-8556

Description of Elective:

This elective is for the BUSM student to learn the multi-disciplinary approach to appropriate care for transgender individuals.

The transgender medicine elective will focus on the initial, continued primary care and surgical care of the transgender individual.

Students will interact with patients interested in changing their gender and who have changed their gender, either medically or surgically.  They will learn the endocrinological mechanisms of puberty as these parallel the hormonal and pharmacological interventions used in transgender medicines.  Students will participate in clinical sessions and are expected to treat patients with respect and sensitivity.  Students attend various clinical sessions during their elective including: endocrinology, primary care, adolescent medicine clinic at BMC and at Boston Children’s Hospital and surgery clinics.  Self-study of social work, pediatrics, psychiatry, ob/gyn and surgery aspects of transgender medicine is required.  Students will be graded on interaction with patients in clinical session, knowledge of the subject from outside reading and a final 15 minute powerpoint presentation in the 4th week of the rotation.


130.1 Clinical Gastroenterology

Instructor: Sharmeel Wasan, M.D.

Location:  Boston Medical Center,  Evans Biomedical Research Center Bldg.,  650 Albany St., 5th Fl., Room 504

Telephone: 638-8330   Contact: Gina Mazzotta   email:

Number of Students: Two

Period to be offered: One Month

Description of Elective:

Emphasis is placed on the diagnosis and management of patients with common gastrointestinal disorders. The student sees outpatients referred to the GI Clinic and patients hospitalized with gastrointestinal problems on the wards of the Menino Pavilion. The student is expected to make daily morning work rounds with the Fellows, see new patients in consultation, and participate in all of the activities including seminars, Journal Club and clinical conferences sponsored by the Gastroenterology Section.


135.1 Clinical Hematology/Oncology

Instructors: Drs.  J.M. Sloan, D. Ngo, D. Faller, R. Blanchard, K. Hartshorn, K. Zaner, C. Rosenberg, V. Sanchorawala, G. Gignac,  and A. Lerner

Location: Boston Medical Center Newton Pavilion/Menino Pavilion

Contact: Brigitte Ruiz

Telephone: (617) 638-7009

Number of Students: One

Period to be Offered: One Month

Description of Elective:

The course in clinical hematology/oncology is designed to prepare students to evaluate and manage hematologic and oncologic disorders. The student will be exposed to patients both in the ambulatory and inpatient hospital setting. He/She will be expected to participate in the initial evaluation of in-patient consultations. In addition, they will have the opportunity to work with an attending physician in at least one outpatient Hematology or Oncology clinical activity per week. The student will be instructed in the technique of performing a bone aspiration and biopsy. In addition considerable time will be spent with the attending interpreting both peripheral blood and bone marrow smears. The student will also attend the weekly clinical and research conferences, which will afford him/her an exposure to the scholastic activities of the section.


135.11 Basic Research in Hematology/Oncology

Instructors: Kevan L. Hartshorn, M.D., Adam Lerner, M.D. and Carol L. Rosenberg, M.D.

Location:Boston Medical Center, Evans Biomedical Research Center-EBRC 4

Contact: Brigitte Ruiz

Telephone: (617) 638-7009

Description of Elective:

This program is designed to provide students with an introduction to

investigational issues in several areas of hematology, immunology, and oncology, including exposure to basic laboratory techniques and current scientific endeavors. Students will have the opportunity to participate directly in on-going projects to obtain a conceptual and practical framework for utilizing laboratory research to address unresolved basic and clinical problems. A broad overview of research interests is provided below. Contact Selena Craig for additional information.

Dr. Hartshorn: Inhibition of phagocyte function by virus; lectin molecules in natural immunity

Dr. Lerner: Analysis of apoptosis pathways in normal and malignant lymphocytes

Dr. Rosenberg: Identification of genetic changes in premalignant lesions of the breast and other tissues

Dr. Seldin: Multistep pathways of lymphoma, autoimmunity and breast cancer development in transgenic and knockout mice


140 Clinical Infectious Disease

Department of Medicine, Section of Infectious Disease-Boston University School of Medicine

Description of Elective:

The student will join the inpatient infectious disease consultation team at Boston Medical Center. The team will include an infectious disease fellow and be supervised by an infectious disease attending physician. The student will evaluate patients under the direction of the fellow, present cases at daily rounds to the attending physician, prepare a thorough written summary of the consultation, and review the medical literature relevant to the patient’s care. Case discussions are oriented around a history and physical examination that incorporates specific information relevant to an infectious disease work-up, and the diagnosis and management appropriate to the patient. The attending physician will review the student’s written presentations, and the student will be given the opportunity to present information gleaned from the medical literature. Students will learn about community and hospital-acquired infections, infections in immunocompromised hosts, including those with HIV infection, and the appropriate use of antimicrobial agents.

Students are expected to participate in all service activities Monday through Friday. Patient care and teaching rounds take place daily for 2-3 hours. No weekend responsibilities or evening call is required.


Identify components of the history, physical examination and laboratory results that are important in the evaluation of the infected patient.

Demonstrate the ability to choose appropriate antimicrobial agents based on clinical presentation and culture data. Create differential diagnoses for infection in the patient based on individual host factors.


Educational activities include evaluating patients for which infectious disease consultation is sought, teaching and bedside rounds with the consult attending physician, and review of relevant literature for discussion. Conferences/ other teaching activities include: microbiology weekly “plate” rounds, regularly scheduled conferences – core lectures, AIDS conference, case conference, Infectious Disease Grand Rounds and the Combined Adult and Pediatric Infectious Disease conference. Attendance at research seminars is encouraged for the interested student.


The student will be evaluated based on their level of active participation in the activities of the consultation service. Specifically, the student will be evaluated on his/ her individual patient work-ups – the oral presentation, the written consultation, the approach to review of relevant literature – and availability for participating in the work of the consultation service. The attending physician, with feedback from the fellow, will evaluate the student’s performance.

Grades (H/HP/P/F) will be used. The attending on the consultation service with direct supervision of the student will be responsible for providing feedback mid-clerkship and upon completion. If problems are identified, the attending physician or the student should contact the Course Director. Grades will be submitted to the Registrar in accord with BUSM policies for grading.


Clinical infectious disease faculty at Boston Medical Center.

Contact and Course Orientation Information

Course Director: Tamar Barlam, MD, MSc

Location: Boston Medical Center, Dowling 3 North

Contact: Sophia Papadopoulos, Dowling 3 North Room 3210


Telephone: 617-414-5265

FAX: 617-638-8070

The student should report to Dowling 3 North for orientation by Dr. Barlam at 8:15 AM on the first day of the elective.

Number of Students

2 students can sign up per block

Length of Elective

4 weeks

Available Blocks/Semesters

Offered year-round


Boston Veterans Administration Medical Center 140.6 [1]

Dr. David Thornton, 857-364-4669 – one position

Location: 1400 VFW Parkway

West Roxbury, MA 02132

Main Telephone: 617-323-7700

[1] Note: This elective requires completion of an additional VA Health System application and fingerprinting. Please contact Irene Jones at for further information.


Metrowest Medical Center: 140.X

Dr. Thomas Treadwell, — one or two positions

Location: 115 Lincoln St, Framingham, MA 01720
Telephone: 508-383-1563

Boston University medical students are very familiar with MetroWest Medical Center. Many of them do physical diagnosis there, and it is one of the core rotations for obstetrics and pediatrics.

ID at MetroWest does more than 700 consultations a year and has a busy outpatient clinic, in both general infectious disease, and travel medicine (2,000 patients a year). There is also a busy HIV service that has Ryan White funding, and provides care to nearly 200 active patients. Finally, there is a hepatitis C clinic where they are involved in a couple of protocols for the treatment of hepatitis C.

Students who wish an alternative to the main BUMC campus for an infectious disease rotation would get a lot of attention at MetroWest and would have both an ambulatory and inpatient experience. In addition to the elective, there are didactic lectures four days a week for the general medicine training program, grand rounds weekly, and other educational experiences.

Drs. Chinhak Chun, Jorge Fleisher and Thomas Treadwell are the board certified infectious diseases physicians at MetroWest Medical Center; both Dr. Treadwell and Dr. Fleisher completed the infectious diseases fellowship at Boston Medical Center. Dr. Treadwell is Adjunct Clinical Assistant Professor in Medicine at Boston University and sees patients at Boston Medical Center as part of the infectious diseases consult service.


Cape Cod Hospital:  140.4

Dr. Laurel Miller, MD
Location: 104B Park Street
Hyannis, MA 02601

Telephone: 508-862-5650; Cell phone 781-710-8105

Students will gain experience in the diagnosis and treatment of infectious diseases as seen in both outpatient and in-patient settings and will learn about out patient intravenous antibiotic therapy for chronic infections. Infection control procedures and rationale will be constantly reinforced and the prevention and management of antibiotic resistant infections will be stressed.

In-patient and outpatient infectious diseases are seen by consultation and office visits. General infectious diseases including cellulitis, osteomyelitis, endocarditis, meningitis, and other bacterial, viral, fungal, and parasitic diseases are seen. During the warmer months, tick-borne and mosquito borne illnesses assume a greater importance. There are 2 comprehensive case management programs within IDCS: HIV case management (over 130 active patients currently) and Hepatitis C Virus case management (over 150 patients (about 50% who also are HIV positive). The infectious disease service is actively involved in the new open-heart surgery program and participation in cardiac surgery rounds is encouraged.

The Infectious Diseases Consulting Service (IDCS) is the only infectious disease practice in Hyannis and the surrounding area. It is located across the street from Cape Cod Hospital.


150.0 Correctional Health-(elective not offered in the 2018/2019 academic year)

Instructors: Shannon Bell, M.D.

Location: Where to report information will be emailed to student.

Contact: Makeba Kent      Telephone: 617 414-7481

Number of Students: 5 (Boston University School of Medicine 4th year medical students only)

Period to be offered: Spring Semester-Block TBD

Description of Elective:

Health care providers at Boston Medical Center are privileged to serve approximately 1,000 inmates every year in both inpatient and outpatient settings. Many incarcerated patients present with complex health care needs, as they are at higher risk for chronic disease, STDs, mental illness, and substance abuse.1  While most inmates need continued medical care, it is common for them to lose contact with the health care system after release from prison because linkage to outside health services is so poor. Thus, incarceration may be one of few opportunities for prisoners to access screenings, prescriptions, medical care, and counseling.2 These services are delivered by correctional health providers as well as physicians in academic medical centers and in the community. Despite this, many providers are often not trained in correctional health. This elective is a unique opportunity for fourth year medical students to care for incarcerated patients and to learn about the special medical and social needs of this population.

Each student will spend clinical time three days a week within the health services unit of a single medium or maximum-security men’s facility.  Under the close supervision of their site preceptors, students will evaluate and care for incarcerated patients and participate in their work-up and treatment plan. Students will be exposed to a number of medical conditions commonly seen among incarcerated patients, which include: diabetes, hypertension, viral hepatitis, HIV/AIDS, tuberculosis, substance abuse disorder, and various mental health disorders.  There will also be an opportunity to join course director Dr. Bell once during the elective for her OB-GYN clinic at MCI-Framingham women’s prison.

In addition to clinic, students will attend weekly seminars presented by content experts on relevant topics in correctional health care. Depending upon the availability of speakers, seminar topics may include jails vs. prisons, geriatric care and compassionate release, mental health within corrections, ethics, and/or LGBTQ health. In order to gain exposure to diverse correctional health settings, students will also participate in two field trips throughout the elective.  Examples of field trip sites are the Suffolk House of Corrections (Suffolk County jail) or Sousa-Baranowski Correctional Facility at Shirley (maximum security).

Students will complete required reflective writing assignments about their experience as well as deliver a 20-minute case presentation at the culmination of the elective.  These presentations will occur in the setting of regular weekly debriefings with the course director.

Given the unique nature of this educational experience and difficulty in making up any aspect of the elective, it is expected that students will make adjustments to their ICM schedules and work with partners to allow them to make their clinical responsibilities, seminars, and debriefs during the elective.

Grading: Pass/Fail

1 Wilper, et al. The Health and Health Care of US Prisoners: Results of a Nationwide Survey. Am J Public Health. 2009 April; 99(4): 666–672.
2 Dumont, et al. Public Health and the Epidemic of Incarceration. Annual Review of Public Health. 2012 April; 33: 325-339.


150.6 Medical Oncology

Instructors: Daniel Jacobson, M.D., J. Carlos Vera, M.D.,
Valia Boosalis, M.D., Michelle Hankins, M.D., Lauren Oshry, M.D. and Ante Lundberg, M.D.

Location: Boston VA Medical Center, 150 S. Huntington Ave., Boston, MA

Number of Students: Two

Period to be offered: One month

Description of Elective:

The student will work closely with the oncology fellows, nurse oncologists and senior staff as part of a hospital-based unit strongly committed to clinical research. This elective will include exposure to the fundamentals of chemotherapy, natural history of commonly encountered cancers, oncology clinical research and principles of interdisciplinary cancer care. Students will be actively involved in the evaluation and management of cancer patients on the wards and in the clinic. Various weekly activities include:

1. Multidisciplinary chest, head and neck, urology and general oncology tumor board conferences

2. Patient management conference

3. Clinical trials research conference

4. Oncology Clinics

Note: This elective requires completion of an additional VA Health System application and fingerprinting with one month notice. Please obtain contact information from elective coordinator upon sign-up.


160.1 Pulmonary Medicine-Clinical Consultation Service at Boston Medical Center

Instructor: Arthur Theodore, M.D.

Location: Boston Medical Center, R-3,Newton Pavilion/Menino Pavilion

Telephone: 638-4862   Contact: Kathyann Adamson-R-3

Number of Students: Two Seniors only

Period to be offered: One month

Description of Elective:

The student will be an integral part of an active in patient clinical pulmonary consultation service. He will be responsible for the initial consultation in patients with a variety of respiratory disorders. The student’s evaluation and plan of management will then be discussed with the pulmonary fellow and at daily staff attending rounds. The elective will provide an opportunity to evaluate chest roentgenograms, interpret arterial blood gases and pulmonary function tests, and discuss the role of and participate in such diagnostic procedures as fiberoptic bronchoscopy, pleural biopsy and thoracentesis.

The student will participate in a full program of teaching conferences including work rounds, chest x-ray conferences, formal interhospital chest conferences, physiology seminars and research conferences, and a special weekly student case discussion conference.


160.6 Pulmonary Medicine – VA Inpatient Clinical Consultation Service

Instructors: Drs.  L. Jack Faling, Alan Fine, Eric Garshick, Ronald Goldstein, Daniel Gottlieb, Joel Karlinsky, Steven Lieberman, Jussi Saukkonen


VA Boston Healthcare System

1400 VFW Parkway

West Roxbury, MA 02132

Telephone:1 857-203-6478 Contact: Susan Cieri

Number of Students: One, Senior only

Period to be offered: One Month

Description of Elective:

The student will work closely with the Pulmonary Fellow seeing consultations throughout the hospital. Experience will be gained in the evaluation and management of all types of respiratory disorders, interpretation of chest x-rays, blood gas data, and diagnostic methods used in the evaluation of lung diseases. Many patients will have complete pulmonary function testing and bronchoscopy in which the student may participate.

Students will attend staff attending rounds five times weekly. In addition there are weekly teaching chest x-ray conference, formal interhospital chest conferences and a journal club. The teaching service is a combined Boston University-Harvard Medical School service.

Note: This elective requires completion of an additional VA Health System application and fingerprinting. Please obtain contact information from elective coordinator upon sign-up.


165.1 Renal Disease

Once scheduled, a student will not be released from a renal  elective unless a substitute is provided.

Instructors: Douglas E. Mesler, M.D., David J. Salant, M.D., Edward A. Alexander, M.D. and Staff

Location: Boston Medical Center, 650 Albany St, 5th Floor, Room 546, Boston, MA 02118

Telephone: 638-7330 – Takiesha Brooks        email:

Number of Students: Two

Period to be offered: One month

Description of Elective:

Each student, under the supervision of clinical fellows and staff, participates in the evaluation and management of patients with acute and chronic renal disease, fluid and electrolyte problems, acid-base disturbances, etc. The major focus of activity is the clinical consult services, where students are taught the skills of clinical evaluation of patients for renal disease and participate in daily work rounds as well as formal attending rounds (3-5 sessions per week). Students are expected to attend all clinical and research conferences, including clinical journal club, clinical conference, pathology conference and renal research conference. Active student participation, including patient presentation at clinical conference, is encouraged.


165.6 Clinical Nephrology

Once scheduled, a student will not be released from a renal elective unless a substitute is provided.

Note: This elective requires completion of an additional VA Health System application and fingerprinting. Please obtain contact information from elective coordinator upon sign-up.

Instructor: Robert J. Hamburger, M.D.

Location: Boston VA Healthcare System,

Boston, MA 02130

Telephone: 617 323-7700

Number of Students: 2 students

Period to be offered: One month

Description of Elective:

This elective emphasizes the physiologic approach to the clinical recognition in evaluation of renal disease. The students, working closely and under the supervision of staff and renal fellows, participate in the work-up and management of their own cases, as well as discussion of others. This part of the elective is available for a period of four weeks or multiples thereof. The students participate in the outpatient Renal Clinics at the Jamaica Plain campus, under the direction of a staff physician. In addition, students also participate on the inpatient consult service at the West Roxbury hospital under the direction of the Renal Fellow and Renal staff physicians.

Students often take the shuttle provided by the V.A. and Boston University between the Jamaica Plain Campus and the West Roxbury Campus.


167.2 Renal Disease Research

Instructors: Dr. David Salant, Dr. Edward A. Alexander,
Dr. James Kaufman, Dr. Jerrold Levine, Dr. Wilfred Lieberthal,
Dr. John H. Schwartz and Dr. Michael Shia, Dr. Steven Borkan, Dr. Douglas Mesler and Dr. Laura Dember

Location: Boston Medical Center, Boston VAMC

Telephone: 638-7330 E428

Number of Students: To be arranged

Period to be offered: Three to six months

Description of Elective:

By special arrangement with the individual faculty members, students may work on clinical research projects or in the laboratory on problems such as immune mechanisms of renal injury, renal cell physiology and pathophysiology, ischemic renal injury, gene regulation, molecular biology of cell receptors or other studies ongoing in the renal section.


170.1 Clinical Rheumatology

Instructor: Robert Simms, M.D. and Associates

Location: BUMC

Telephone: 617-414-2502  Contact: Sophia Papadopoulos

Number of Students: 2

Period to be offered: 1 month

Description of Elective:

Students will participate in all activities of the clinical rheumatology service, including in-patient consult rounds, arthritis clinics, and a formal teaching program. Students will see in-patient consults at Boston University Medical Center under the supervision of the clinical arthritis fellow and staff and present these cases to the faculty attending of the month. Students will be expected to read and informally report on recent writings which are pertinent to the patients they work up. Students will also spend four half-days per week in the Boston Medical Center and VA Arthritis Clinics.

The elective also includes 3 to 4 hours per week of formal education to teach students the central concepts and basic skills of rheumatology. Clinical rounds are made 3-4 times per week.


171.1 Rheumatology Research

Instructors: Drs. Robert Simms, David Felson, Shyr-te Ju,
Robert Lafyatis, Timothy McAlindon, Martha Skinner and Russell Widom

Location: BUMC, Evans 5

Telephone: 617 414-2502

Number of Students: 2-4

Period to be offered: 2-6 months

Description of Elective:

The student will have the opportunity to spend two or more months working closely with a faculty preceptor on a research project. The project may be part of an ongoing effort or one that the student develops in consultation with the preceptor. Projects will relate to autoimmune, connective tissue and rheumatic diseases and the basic biomedical sciences which relate to their pathophysiology.

Current areas of investigation include:

A) Scleroderma and Raynaud’s phenomenon: clinical, immunologic, metabolic and molecular studies.

B) Biochemical immunological and clinical aspects of amyloid

C) Epidemiologic studies of rheumatic disease

D) Health services and outcomes research in rheumatology

E) Basic immunology and cell biology

F) Clinical studies in various rheumatic diseases

Students participating in this elective will have the opportunity to learn fundamental approaches to biomedical investigation including critical review of published work and experimental design and analysis. Depending on the particular project elected, skills in molecular biology, cell biology, immunology, biochemistry and biostatistics and epidemiology will be gained. Students wishing to take this elective should contact Dr. Joseph H. Korn or, if the particular interest area is known, the suitable faculty member. Enough time should be allowed for discussions with faculty to plan the details of the elective.


180.1 Dermatology

Once scheduled, a student will not be released from a dermatology elective unless a substitute is provided.

Note: Elective can be taken for four weeks only. There will no exceptions.

Instructor: Margaret Lee, M.D., Ph.D.

Elective Coordinator: Daniella Adrien, 609 Albany St., J-Building, 2nd Floor

Telephone: 617 638-5523  email:

Dermatology Clinics: 725 Albany St., 8th Floor, Suite 8B. Every day at 830am

Didactic sessions: 609 Albany St, 2nd floor. Wednesdays 8am;  Occasional Mondays at 515pm;  Occasional    Thursday mornings at 700am

Grand Rounds: 725 Albany St., 8th floor. 815am on 1st Wednesday of the month

Description of Elective: 

Dermatology is an ambulatory rotation integrated with a vibrant inpatient consultation service. In general, the workday starts at 830AM, though there are important teaching conferences that may occur at an earlier time on some days. Clinics and/or Consultations generally end by 5:30PM. Didactic sessions typically take place on Wednesday mornings beginning at 800am. In addition, there may be occasional didactic sessions on a Monday after clinics and on a Thursday morning before clinic. Our monthly Grand Rounds takes place on the first Wednesday morning of the month at the DOB, 8th floor clinic.

Our group is comprised of attending dermatologists, dermatopathologists, procedural dermatologists, doctorate scientists, dermatology residents, international trainees, dermatopathology fellows and a skin oncology fellow. Boston University is a center of excellence in basic cutaneous biology research, skin oncology, wound healing, psoriasis, connective tissue disease, photomedicine, hair disorders, dermatologic surgery/oncology, dermatopathology and dermatology education.


The purpose of the dermatology elective is to provide BUSM IV students the content, functional knowledge and practical skills needed to identify, evaluate, manage and prevent common and important disorders of the integumentary system.


180.13 Research in Skin Cancer

Instructor: Debjani Sahni, M.D.

Location: 609 Albany Street, J-508

Telephone: 638-5517

Number of Students: 1-4 per rotation

Period to be offered: Blocks 9-20

Description of Elective:

Student(s) will work with experienced Skin Oncologist to conduct basic and translational research in melanoma and non-melanoma skin cancers.   Work will include independent and supervised research on innovative studies and manuscript writing.