Training Program

The Vivian L. Smith Department of Neurosurgery at UTHealth offers a two-year neurocritical care fellowship for applicants who are board certified or eligible in one of the following areas:

  • Neurology
  • Emergency Medicine
  • Anesthesia
  • Internal Medicine

We also offer a one-year fellowship track for eligible candidates who have completed post-graduate training in one of the following:

  • Neurosurgery
  • Medical Critical Care
  • Anesthesia Critical Care
  • Surgical Critical Care


Our primary goal is to train the best neurointensivists in the country. The educational curriculum is specifically designed to train physicians with a strong base in general critical care with an emphasis on neurological and neurosurgical emergencies.

The neurocritical care program is the primary team managing all cases in the Neuroscience ICU. Our multidisciplinary program is staffed with neurointensivists of diverse backgrounds collaborating in a high-acuity patient care environment. Our unit is equipped with multimodality monitoring capability including:

  • ICP
  • CPP
  • Continuous video EEG monitoring
  • Continuous cardiac output
  • SjvO2 monitoring
  • Digitalized brain oxymetry (PbtO2) monitors connected to patient bedside monitoring

Fellows will be trained in performing all ICU procedures, including:

  • Endotracheal intubations
  • Tracheostomies
  • Bronchoscopy
  • Both invasive and semi-invasive hemodynamic monitoring
  • Advanced ICU sonography
  • Central/arterial line placement

The Neuroscience ICU is a truly academic training environment where fellows will work with Neurosurgery, Neurology, Anesthesia and Emergency Medicine residents, as well as rotating fellows from other critical care programs. Fellows may rotate through the Medical, Surgical/Trauma, and Cardiovascular ICUs and are offered a number of electives including Anesthesiology, Stroke, EEG, TCD, Neuroradiology and Burns. They also have the opportunity to work on the nation’s first Mobile Stroke Unit.


Our program offers structured academic conferences to supplement the robust clinical experience. Weekly fellowship lectures present both neurologic and general critical care topics covered on the UCNS board exam. Guest speakers from multiple specialties including Neurosurgery, Neurology/Stroke, Cardiology, Pulmonary Critical Care, Gastroenterology and Nephrology regularly share their expertise within the fellowship curriculum. Combined Neuro and Anesthesia Critical Care board review meetings go over practice examination questions on a weekly basis. All fellows will also take the annual MCCKAP exam to help prepare for the boards and track their progress over the course of their training.

Fellows run our monthly morbidity and mortality conferences, journal clubs, and case conferences. A weekly Neuroscience ICU didactic is provided by core Neurocritical Care faculty and staff for rotating fellows, residents, and medical students. The UTHealth Medical School offers a state-of-the-art Clinical Skills Center where fellows participate in simulation sessions.

The educational environment is highly research-oriented and protected time will be provided along with mentorship to prepare for an academic neurointensivist career. The program supports all senior fellows to attend the Neurocritical Care Society Annual Meeting, at which our fellows frequently present research projects completed during their training.

Annual Neurocritical Care Fellowship Graduation Ceremony

Annual Neurocritical Care Fellowship Graduation Ceremony