Education

Overview:

All of our predoctoral and postdoctoral trainees participate in a comprehensive training program to prepare them for careers in pain research that includes coursework, shadowing, and career development workshops.

Courses:
Mechanisms And Clinical Presentation Of Pain - MSNBIO 2622 

Course Director: Dr. Michael Gold - msg22@pitt.edu

This course provides attendees with vocabulary and knowledge about anatomy, physiology, mechanisms and modulation of pain. This fundamental knowledge is complemented by assigned readings from the literature and clinical presentations about pain syndromes and pain management. The course is offered in spring semesters and meets in room 1495 BST on Mondays and Thursdays, 3:30 – 5:00. (3 semester hours)

Pain Models - Rationale, testing and interpretation - MSNBIO 2623  

Course Director: Dr. Sarah Ross - saross@pitt.edu

This course will focus on the design and analysis of animal and human pain models and will incorporate classroom presentations about various pain models (e.g., inflammatory, neuropathic, etc.), including demonstrations. The course is offered in fall semesters and meets in room 1495 BST on Mondays, 3:30 – 4:30. (1 semester hour)

Click Here to Learn More and Download Lecture Schedule: Pain Models Page

Pain Journal Club - MSNBIO 2651

Course Director: Dr. Rick Koerber - rkoerber@pitt.edu

This discussion-based course uses assigned readings to examine pain mechanisms and management with an emphasis on critical literature evaluation and topical developments in the field of pain. This course meets weekly in room 1495 BST on Tuesdays at noon. (1 semester hour, fall and spring semesters)

Click Here to Learn More and Download Lecture Schedule: Journal Club Page

Current Research on Pain (CROP) - MSNBIO 2682

Course Director: Dr. Sarah Ross - saross@pitt.edu

This is an advanced graduate level course for students interested in current research on pain mechanisms, management and clinical presentation of pain. Presentations by course participants form the basis for class participation and discussion. This course meets every other Thursday in room 1495 BST at noon. (1 semester hour, fall and spring semesters)

Click Here to Learn More and Download Lecture Schedule: CROP Page

Shadowing:
Pain Perspectives

This program provides trainees the opportunity to shadow pain physicians as they interview, diagnose and manage chronic and acute pain patients within the Pain Medicine Program, Department of Anesthesiology Drs. Ajay Wasan and Jacques Chelly and in other clinical settings (e.g., headache clinic Dr. Robert Kaniecki, functional bowel disorders clinic Dr. David Levinthal, physical therapy Drs. Gwendolyn Sowa and Helm and cranial nerve disorders Dr. Raymond Sekula) within the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center.

Workshops:
Career Development

All postdocs are encouraged to participate in the career development programming developed and offered through the office of Dr. Darlene Zellers, Director of the Center for Postdoctoral Affairs in the Health Sciences. This programing covers a wide variety of career development related issues. A schedule of workshops and other career development opportunities can be accessed at http://www.oacd.health.pitt.edu/ such as:  "Life After Postdoc," "To Postdoc or Not to Postdoc," "The
Scientific Publication Process," "CV to Resume," and "Poster Presentations."


Teaching: post-doctoral trainees also teach classes in two programs

Patient Pain Educaiton

Trainees provide basic background on pain and underlying mechanisms to patients and their families in a program that is run by the chronic pain clinic.  This patient education is a program developed by developed by Dr. Wasan, and is run through the chronic pain clinic. This 3-4 hr course is offered to patients and family members every 6-8 weeks, and includes the presentation of what we think we know about the mechanisms underlying the pain program and the therapeutic strategies employed. This program was modeled after a very successful program developed at the Mayo Clinic in Florida. Trainees gain experience in presenting complex material to the lay public as well as a first-hand look at the larger impact of pain.

Clinical Pain Fellows Education

Trainees gain additional experience in communication skills through their presentation of didactic material to clinical fellows in the regional and chronic pain fellowships. T32 fellows will prepare and deliver 1-2 lectures per semester (4 hours per year max) on the anatomy, physiology and/or pharmacology of pain and analgesia under the supervision of their mentors and clinical fellowship directors. Trainees receive feedback from both faculty and fellows.