In the first year of the training program, residency training goals will, in general, be the same as those articulated for adult neurology residents. The primary focus of the first year of training is to learn clinical neurology and to demonstrate this ability by taking a neurological history and performing a neurological examination competently. Fellows are also expected to acquire basic ability at neuroanatomic localization and to become familiar with the basics of diagnosis and treatment of common neurological problems, and to begin to gain exposure to uncommon neurological problems. In addition, first year fellows should gain basic knowledge of the use and interpretation of neuroimaging studies, basic knowledge of the appropriate use of electroencephalography, basic knowledge of the use of other neurodiagnostic and laboratory studies, skill in the performance of lumbar puncture, and basic knowledge of the interpretation of cerebrospinal fluid results.
During the second year of training, the focus is to learn clinical pediatric neurology and to be able to take a comprehensive, age-appropriate neurodevelopmental history. Fellows should do this by learning how to perform an age- and developmental-stage appropriate neurological examination comprehensively and accurately and be able to apply principles of neuroanatomic localization. In the second year, fellows will also become familiar with the diagnosis and treatment of common childhood neurological problems in the in-patient and out-patient setting and in doing so will learn about the appropriate use and interpretation of neurodiagnostic and laboratory studies in children.
In the third year of training, the primary goal is to learn clinical pediatric neurology. Fellows must also aim to further refine skills in obtaining a comprehensive neuro-developmental history and performing a neurological examination in children of all ages and to have sufficient skills in general pediatrics to be able to integrate relevant developmental, behavioral and medical issues into the neurological evaluation. In the third year of training, fellows will also strive to be familiar with the diagnosis and treatment of common childhood neurological problems and to develop a growing awareness of many rare pediatric neurological disorders and to be competent at managing most common pediatric neurological problems independently. As a mature fellow in the third year, it is important to recognize situations where referral to a consultant neurologist with more specialized expertise would be beneficial, and to gain expertise in identifying and consulting with such specialists, locally and nationally. Finally, third year fellows will improve skills in the interpretation of EEG's and neuroimaging studies and demonstrate to be skilled in the interpretation of cerebrospinal fluid analyses in children of different ages. As a Pediatric Neurology fellow, the trainees must also learn more about child psychiatry, pediatric rehabilitation, and pediatric neurosurgery, in areas in which these disciplines intersect with pediatric neurology practice.