Comprehensive Peripheral Nerve Program

The Fellowship in Peripheral Nerve Surgery (a Committee on Advanced Subspecialty Training – CAST - approved fellowship) is a 6-to 12-month program that specializes in the complete range of peripheral nerve surgery. This includes peripheral nerve tumors, complex entrapment syndromes, peripheral nerve injuries and their repair, pain disorders, CNS disorders that benefit from peripheral nerve surgery (including spinal cord injury and spasticity), surgical diagnosis. Expertise is built in anatomy, MR and ultrasound imaging, electrodiagnostic studies and neurostimulation. Clinical practice is integrated with neurology and plastic hand surgery. Minimally invasive and endoscopic techniques, including endoscopic spine surgery, are emphasized.

Goals of Training

Our expectations are that a fellow would develop mastery of
- Diagnosis, localization and treatment options
- Appropriate interpretation of MRIs throughout the body
- Skill and comfort with use of ultrasound and performance of ultrasound-
   guided injections and/or stimulation procedures
- Meticulous soft tissue and microsurgical dissection and repair
- Endoscopic techniques in nerve and spinal surgery



The fellow is expected to spend 20% of his or her time conducting research and the remaining time with clinical training. Research can be conducted in basic laboratory or clinical research. Basic scientific research would be offered in Dr. Mahan’s NIH-funded laboratory, which is focused on nerve trauma. Options in this research would include investigation in basic mechanism of neuro-inflammation, treatment options for pathologic nerve regeneration, or imaging of peripheral nerves. Clinical research options would include retrospective (or, if planned in advance, prospective) outcomes related to any of the diverse nerve pathologies encountered. Prior projects have included machine-learning on MRIs of peripheral nerve tumors. Clinical research in endoscopic surgery is another burgeoning field for research.

It is expected that the fellow produce at least 2 publications related to peripheral nerve neurosurgery and will present their research at departmental grand rounds and/or nationally.


A core element of fellowship training is one-to-one mentorship, including nuances of diagnosis, academic research development, career goals and national leadership opportunities. Our goal is to develop thought leaders within neurosurgery and peripheral nerve surgery.

Academic Responsibilities

Resident education remains preserved by the high volume of peripheral nerve surgery. Certain procedures, such as the lower complexity cases that are required by the American Board of Neurological Surgeons, will remain the part of core residency training. More complex, lengthy and technically demanding surgeries, which are often performed only by an attending surgeon, will be part of the fellow’s training. It is not uncommon for some of these challenging cases to take 6-10 hours, which provides ample opportunity for skill set development for both residents and fellows. Furthermore, it is expected that the fellow will develop their understanding and skills by performing resident teaching, in addition to the education received from the attending surgeon and independent reading/review.

Future Peripheral Nerve Fellow

  • 2022-2023 TBD

Contact Us

Jessica Colon
Fellowship Program Coordinator
Phone: 801-581-5584
Fax: 801-581-4385
Email: jessica.colon@hsc.utah.edu

Department of Neurosurgery
University of Utah Health
175 N. Medical Drive East, 5th Floor
Salt Lake City, UT 84132