UF Movement Disorders Neurology Fellowships

Movement Disorders team in front of the Orthopaedics and Sports Medicine Institute
Movement Disorders team in front of the Orthopaedics and Sports Medicine Institute

The University of Florida Center for Movement Disorders and Neurorestoration is a large collaborative interdisciplinary group of clinicians and scientists from 10+ different academic departments across the UF campus.  These investigators cover all major disciplines involved in both patient care and research of basal ganglia disorders.  The center is staffed by a core group of 20+ faculty and over 40 graduate, medical, undergraduate students, and laboratory personnel.  The core faculty includes 7 fellowship trained movement disorders neurologists.  The facility is one of the only places in the world where a fellow can train among experts from every discipline in care and research in one location.

Fellowship Description

UF offers a comprehensive, well-balanced, individualized two-year fellowship program.  The 1st year is spent primarily focusing on the clinical study of movement disorders with direct patient care and clinic responsibilities (75%) including: the assessment and management of all types of movement disorders; screening, operative, and post-operative care of surgical (i.e. DBS) patients; and performance of botulinum toxin injections. The fellow will have 20-25% protected time for academic/research activities. The 2nd year of fellowship is tailored to the specific interests of the fellow. We typically accept 2-3 fellows per year from the US and 1-3 fellows per year from abroad.

Goals & Objectives of the Fellowship

  • To gain competence in the diagnosis and treatment of all clinical movement disorders through direct exposure and supervised clinic experience/assessments.
  • To gain expertise in drug and surgical therapy of movement disorders to be accomplished through direct study, participation in clinic, participation in DBS (learn microelectrode recording and DBS programming) and weekly conferences.
  • To actively participate in Botulinum toxin injection therapy.
  • To understand the role of neurorehabilitation and the allied health specialties through direct clinical assessment
  • To become proficient in the use of clinical rating scales in movement disorders and related research.
  • To prepare at least one case report and one literature review (such as review articles or chapters) for publication or submission to a professional society (Year 1).
  • To conduct and prepare one retrospective study (such as a database mining project) and one prospective study for submission or publication (Year 2).
  • To participate in research in an area of the fellow’s choosing under the guidance of supervising faculty.
  • To take an active part in our yearly teaching courses “The Practical Approach to Movement Disorders,” our yearly Resident’s Workshop on Botulinum Toxin Injection, and our annual DBS course.
  • To assist and learn from video rounds, DBS interdisciplinary conferences, complex case conferences, and video teaching conference

Movement Disorders Fellow Schedule

  • Year 1: 75-80% Clinical and 20-25% Research
  • Year 2 50-75% Focused Academic Clinical-Research Area (one of the four below or a tailored track)
    • Translational Track
    • Functional Neurosurgery Track
    • Clinical Trials Track
    • Ataxia, Atypical Parkinsonism or Tourette Track
  • All Weekends and Holidays Off, No night call.

Application & Contact Information

 Clinical Experience & Clinic Information

  • Alternating Video Teaching Rounds Scholarly Talks
  • Monthly Teaching Video Conference
  • Twice a Month Research Mentorship Meetings
  • Monthly Physiology Teaching Conference
  • Monthly DBS, Clinical Trials, Complex Case Conferences
  • DBS Programming and Botulimum Toxin Workshops

Medical, Behavioral, and Surgical Clinical Trials and Statistics

Irene Malaty, M.D., Chris Hass, PhD., Nikolaus McFarland, M.D., Ph.D., Michael Okun, M.D., Samuel Wu, PhD, and Karen Hegland, Ph.D.

Dr. Aparna Wagle Shukla performs TMS and physiologic research on movement patients.

Data from microelectrode recording used to refine targeting
Data from microelectrode recording used to refine targeting

Movement Disorders Surgery

  • PD, dystonia, tremor, MS tremor, Huntington’s, choreas, ataxias,Tourette,OCD, cluster headache, depression, others
  • Learn selection, OR procedure, microelectrode mapping, DBS programming, troubleshooting
  • Learn DBS Interdisciplinary Team Approach and how to set up your own program

with Michael S. Okun M.D., Aparna Wagle Shukla, M.D., Frank Bova, Ph.D., Dawn Bowers, Ph.D., Herb Ward, M.D., and Kelly D. Foote M.D.

Cognitive Neuroscience – Non-Motor Basal Ganglia Features, Impulse Control, Neuroimaging FMRI/DTI

Dawn Bowers, PhD., Cate Price, PhD, Russ Bauer, PhD, Kenneth M. Heilman, M.D., Keith D. White PhD, Frank Bova, PhD, Bruce Crosson, PhD

Speech, Swallowing Therapy, Occupational & Physical Therapy, Applied Kinesiology

Karen Hegland, Ph.D, Julie Hicks, M.A., CCC-SLP, Portia Gardner-Smith, OT, Meredith DeFranco, DPT, Christou Evangelos, Ph.D., Chris J. Hass, Ph.D.

Tyler’s Hope Interdisciplinary Dystonia and Botulinum Toxin Clinic

Irene Malaty, M.D., Aparna Wagle Shukla, M.D., Michael Okun, M.D., Kelly Foote, M.D., Herbert Ward, M.D.

Huntington’s Disease Interdisciplinary Clinic

Nikolaus McFarland, M.D., Ph.D., Dawn Bowers, M.D., Herbert Ward, M.D., Maulik Shah, M.D., Ph.D.

Tourette Syndrome/Tics Clinic

Irene Malaty, M.D., Herb Ward, M.D., Heather Simpson, OTL, Kelly D. Foote, M.D.

Ataxia Clinic

Sub Subramony, M.D.

PSP and Atypical Parkinsonism Clinic

Nikolaus McFarland, M.D., PhD., Melissa Armstrong, M.D., Chris Hass, PhD., Dawn Bowers, M.D., Herbert Ward, M.D.

Parkinson disease and Lewy Body Dementia Clinic

Melissa Armstrong, M.D., Nikolaus McFarland, M.D., PhD, Meredith Wicklund, M.D., Dawn Bowers, M.D.

Basal Ganglia Basic and Physiological Sciences

Stem Cells, Viral Vectors, Neuroplasticity, Neurophysiology, Neurodegeneration

Benoit Giasson, Ph.D., Dennis Steindler, PhD., Ron Mandel, PhD., Jada Lewis PhD., David Borchelt PhD., Nikolaus McFarland, M.D., PhD.

Comprehensive UF INFORM Database

  • All patients in the center who are willing are consented as research subjects and clinical subjects for all disciplines
  • Follow 10,000+ patients with videos and scales and minimal interdisciplinary datasets

Operation Housecall

Fellows are assigned 1-2 under-insured patients to visit, perform motor scales, adjust medications, etc.

Gainesville Region

Gainesville is warm all year round, and also home to Paynes Prairie, Devil’s Millhopper, and the Butterfly Rainforest.  It is also a quick drive to Cedar Key, St. Augustine and Jacksonville Beaches, as well as to Orlando, Tampa and Daytona Attractions.