Renal fellows receive clinical training in all aspects of nephrology. Active sites include two hospitals as its base – the UAMS Medical Center and the John L. McClellan Memorial Veterans Hospital. In addition, we treat adult patients in the Burn Center at Arkansas Children’s Hospital (ACH). We have an active transplant program at UAMS, continuity clinics, chronic hemodialysis units and home dialysis programs. Areas of particular expertise at UAMS include acute kidney injury, glomerular diseases, CKD, and home dialysis. In addition, our fellows gain hands-on experience in ultrasonography and feel comfortable doing POCUS by the end of their training.
Our faculty members have active, ongoing funded research programs and provide hands-on research experience to fellows. Major areas of clinical research include cardiovascular complications in CKD, pre-dialysis education, telemedicine, AKI with emphasis on biomarkers and CKD progression. Ongoing basic science projects investigate molecular mechanisms of renal injury and repair. Our Nephrology fellows have opportunities throughout their training years to actively participate and gain robust research experience with groundbreaking research projects such as: mechanisms, biomarkers, and treatment of acute kidney injury, mechanisms of novel cause of causes of glomerular diseases like FSGS, membranous nephropathy etc, and novel treatment for CKD which alters the gut microbiome. Additional research opportunities include collaboration with world renowned pathologists.
Nephrology Fellows receive vast experience in Transplant Nephrology during their dedicated rotations with Transplant Nephrology faculty. UAMS has a combined liver and kidney transplant program which allows our fellows to work closely with a multidisciplinary team of surgeons, coordinators, nurses, social workers, and transplant physicians. As of June 2022, UAMS has performed 158 kidney transplants. Additionally, fellows also gain a unique set of experiences in the transplant clinic by being involved in pre- and post-transplant evaluations hence playing a substantial role in the overall wellbeing of the patients. Lastly, our fellows attend weekly kidney selection committee meetings and get well-versed with the criteria and processes for successful kidney transplantation through a thorough evaluation and comparison of donors and recipient factors. The Scientific Registry of Transplant Recipients (SRTR) has ranked the UAMS kidney transplant program among the top of 256 kidney transplant programs nationwide. For the third year in a row, the registry gave the UAMS kidney transplant program five bars – the highest ranking possible – in two categories: the speed of obtaining deceased donor kidneys and patient survivability one year after transplant
We have nationally distinguished faculty members who conduct and participate in top notch dialysis courses including modalities like CRRT, peritoneal dialysis, hemodialysis for renal fellows. Our fellows get ample experience in caring for our end stage renal patients and effectively handling their dialysis related issues by working at our hemodialysis units at UAMS and VA. We have faculty dedicated for peritoneal dialysis education who help our fellows getting familiar with various aspects of modality. Lastly, our fellows manage critically ill ICU patients requiring CRRT on daily basis under the supervision of experienced faculty.
Chronic Kidney Disease
Chronic Kidney Disease (CKD) can have debilitating effects on a patient’s life especially if progressed to end stage kidney disease. This can be prevented by taking appropriate timely measures. We have a multidisciplinary team at UAMS that work closely with CKD patients on multiple health related aspects. Fellows routinely attend CKD clinics with our dedicated faculty and play a substantial role in the patient’s life. A group of healthcare providers from UAMS and CKD patient advocates from Arkansas took the initiative to establish a statewide model aimed at early recognition and treatment of CKD, thereby slowing, or preventing its progression to ESRD. Our fellows have been actively involved in this collaboration which is probably the first of its kind in the country with the goal to improve kidney health both in Arkansas and nationally.
Our fellows have daily dedicated one-hour conferences led by esteemed and experienced faculty members. Fellows actively participate in weekly journal clubs, case presentations, biopsy conferences, grand rounds, and renal physiology series. We have guest speakers from throughout the country who help our fellows understand various cumbersome concepts of nephrology. We host an annual conference, Kidney Con, that brings in expansive panels, hands on ultrasound sessions, and guest speakers both from national and international forums which is quite popular among renal fellows.