Northwestern University Feinberg School of Medicine

Department of Orthopaedic Surgery

Spine Fellowship

(Application Deadline – October 31)

Welcome to the Northwestern Spine Fellowship Program

The Spine Fellowship provides a comprehensive experience in adult spine disorders at Northwestern Memorial Hospital.  Our fellows receive exposure to all aspects of cervical, thoracic and lumbar spine pathology: from the occiput to the pelvis. 

We are also now a combined fellowship with the Neurosurgery Spine program at Northwestern.

Surgical conditions include:

We offer a broad experience in primary and revision cases, including minimally invasive, motion sparing, and complex reconstructive techniques. Our fellows are involved with over 300 surgeries a year and will have an opportunity to work side-by-side with all of our spine faculty both in and out of the operating room as well as also spend up to 6 months with Dr. Tyler Koski and the Neurosurgery Spine program at Northwestern.

In addition to a large and expansive surgical experience, we have created an academic curriculum focused on the education of our fellows and residents. Our fellows are involved with the spine curriculum and the weekly surgical indications conference. Additionally, the fellows are involved with the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery conferences including Fracture Conference, Grand Rounds, and M&M.

Research is critically important for our fellowship. Our fellows are heavily involved in all aspects of clinical research: from developing critical study questions all the way to presentations and publications. This exposure is vital to developing a critical eye on the literature, providing high quality evidence-based care, and launching our fellows’ professional careers. Completion of one research project publishable in a high-quality, peer-reviewed journal is a requirement of the fellowship. We expect our fellows to exceed that requirement.

Our Spine Faculty:
Alpesh A. Patel, MD, FACS – Program Director
Wellington K. Hsu, MD

We are proud to announce that, starting in 2017, the Northwestern Spine Fellowship program has been selected to join an elite list of spine programs by the AO Spine North America.Our program has been recognized for its excellent program structure and educational content. We look forward to this relationship and the opportunities for research, education, and prominence that this brings to our fellows. More information can be found at

Applicants must have completed an ACGME approved orthopaedic surgery or neurosurgery residency. We are, unfortunately, unable to accept applicants from non-ACGME approved programs into our clinical fellowship program.

Thank you for your interest in the Northwestern Spine Fellowship. Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have any questions.

Alpesh A. Patel, MD, FACS
Professor, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery

Program Director, Northwestern Orthopaedic Spine Fellowship

Director, Orthopaedic Spine Surgery

Program Director

Dr. Alpesh Patel
Alpesh A. Patel, MD

Current Fellow


Felipe Ituarte, MD

Contact Information

Alfredo Bueno
Fellowship Coordinator

Housestaff Research Portal

Feinberg has the infrastructure and resources to assist McGaw trainees interested in conducting scientific research. Visit our Housestaff Research Portal to learn more.