Elective in Vascular Surgery

Overall Objectives

To gain a basic understanding of common problems encountered by the vascular surgeon, including their relevant presentation, pathophysiology, investigations and management.

Specific Objectives

The following is a list of common problems seen by the vascular surgeon. For each problem listed by the end of your rotation, you should be familiar with their clinical presentation, pathophysiology indicated investigations and basic management.

  • Stroke related to cerebrovascular disease - carotid artery stenosis
  • Subcavian artery steal syndrome
  • Chronic arterial insufficiency of the lower extremities
  • Acute limb ischemia
  • Peripheral arterial aneurysms abdominal aorta, popliteal artery.
  • Postphlebetic syndrome and varicose veins

Important Information About the Rotation

  • Ambulatory clinics are held by one or two vascular surgeons every day beginning at 0800, 2nd floor of the Civic Parkdale Clinic.
  • Operating rooms for vascular surgery run every day beginning every morning at 0800, except on Wednesdays 0830. Check with the main OR desk for specific surgeon's room assignment or case list. Call 18800.
  • The Division of Vascular Surgery conducts didactic teaching rounds every Wednesday morning. These are usually held at 0715 in the Fisher Room, but check the schedule to confirm.
  • Problem solving rounds are held Thursday afternoons in the C1 classroom radiology. This is an opportunity to learn about case presentations, how to interpret angiograms, and develop problem solving skills.
  • Journal Club takes place the last Thursday of every month. If you are on the service at this time, you are invited to attend. Call Dr. Hill's secretary at 16043 for details and to RSVP. Journal Club is held at a local restaurant and relevant articles from the literature are critically reviewed.
  • Ward rounds begin at 0700 on E-2
  • Blood Flow Laboratory for non-invasive testing A2.

Rotation recommendations

  • For 2 week rotations, spend at least 5 out of your 10 days in clinic. Clinic provides the opportunity to see and review many patients with a vascular surgeon.
  • Before going to clinic in the morning and after clinic is completed in the early afternoon, return to the wards to round with the team. This will give you the opportunity to see more acute problems that have required hospitalization or see clinic patients who have been brought in for elective surgery.
  • Try hard to get to the operating room to see an abdominal aortic aneurysm repair, carotid endarterectomy, peripheral bypass and varicose vein surgery.
  • Optional activities includes visits to the blood flow lab or angiography suite to see how our non-invasive and invasive investigations are carried out.
  • Attend all scheduled rounds
  • Complete your vascular surgery passport to ensure you have had a wide exposure to vascular surgery.

Location: The Ottawa Hospital, Civic Campus

Duration: 2 weeks minimum

No. of Students: 2

Available for: 3rd and 4th year students


Evaluations will be based on your attendance, enthusiasm and willingness to learn and participate in day to day activities while rotating through vascular surgery. Your vascular surgery passport form will be used to assess attendance, so please make it available at the time of your evaluation. Input regarding your performance will be sought from the vascular fellow, housestaff, nurses and surgeons whom you have interacted with.


  • Way, Lawrence & Doherty, Gerard M. (2003). Current Surgical Diagnosis & Treatment, 12th edition. A LANGE medical book.

Alternate Book (sold as a set)

  • Lawrence, P. (2000). Essentials of General Surgery, 3 rd edition . Philadelphia: Lippincott, Williams & Wilkin
  • Lawrence, P. (2000). Essentials of Surgical Specialties, 2nd edition. Philadelphia: Lippincott, Williams & Wilkins
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