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Orthopedic Research Fellowship

The Orthopedic Research Fellowship program began in 2003 and is a one to two year commitment. Fellows participating in our program work directly with our research team and faculty on a number of ongoing studies.

Researchers will have the opportunity to be involved with writing and editing manuscripts in addition to presenting their research at highly regarded national conferences.

In addition, we have research volunteer opportunities. Please contact our Orthopaedic Research Department at 303-436-5825.

Orthopedic Research Fellowship Objectives

Our Research Fellowship programs are one to two year commitments. We offer a fully-funded AO Trauma Research Fellowship. In addition, we have partially funded opportunities for clinical or basic science fellowships and post doctoral training. Research opportunities exist in clinical trials, outcome studies, microvascular, traumatic brain injury (TBI) and neutrophil/inflammation studies. Our research fellows work directly with our research team and faculty on a number of ongoing studies. You will have the opportunity to be involved with writing and editing manuscripts in addition to poster presentations at national conferences. 


  1. To introduce critical topics in orthopedic research and orthopedic traumatology.
  2. To identify legal, ethical, and regulatory aspects of research.
  3. To acquire basic knowledge of protocol development including literature searches, research design, statistical analysis, and interpretation of results.
  4. To participate on an interdisciplinary research team and successfully implement studies.
  5. To identify funding opportunities and develop grant writing skills.
  6. To write up study results and/or review articles for publication, and to disseminate findings through poster and podium presentations. A minimum of four submissions for publication is expected each year of the fellowship.


Objective 1

  • Bi-monthly meetings with orthopedic mentor
  • Participation in the orthopedic journal club
  • Attendance at weekly orthopedic rounds
  • Attendance at morning fracture conferences
  • Attendance at one or more orthopedic conferences

Objective 2

  • Completion of institutional review board training
  • Completion of HIPAA training
  • Participation and training in regulatory aspects related to protocol development and implementation of drug and device studies.

Objective 3

  • Bi-monthly meetings with research mentor
  • Attendance at intensive seminar in basic/intermediate statistics
  • Attendance at seminar focused on critical review of research literature and evidence based practice
  • Training in literature search techniques for online databases, including MEDLINE, CINAHL, PsycINFO and PubMed
  • Introduction to outcomes research and specifically strengths and limitations of commonly used orthopaedic outcome measures e.g DASH, SF-36, SMFA

Objective 4

  • Responsibility for one or more active research studies including informed consent, subject enrollment, data collection, subject follow-up, management of institutional review board paperwork
  • Participation on the trauma research call schedule
  • Responsibility for trauma database management

Objective 5

  • Attendance at grant identification and grant writing seminar
  • Participation in meetings with the Sponsored Programs and Research Organization

Objective 6

  • Writing up results of projects and revising papers for publication
  • Assisting mentors with preparing papers and book chapters for publication
  • Mining registries and databases for original research studies


The orthopedic trauma fellow is expected to spend his/her time in research 1 day per week and the other days split between the operating room and clinics. Call will be, on average, one weekday per week and every 5th weekend. The fellow will be on call with an orthopedic trauma attending. Each fellow will have four weeks of vacation.

Board Rounds

Morning X-ray rounds begin at 7:00 a.m. Monday, Tuesday, Thursday, and Friday. During X-ray board rounds, the on-call residents present the cases that were treated during the previous 24 hours. The orthopedic trauma fellow will be encouraged to comment on treatment options, reduction methods, and relevant literature related to these cases.


Didactic conferences take place at the University of Colorado Wednesday mornings from 7-9am. The fellow is expected to participate in grand rounds, the trauma core resident curriculum, the summer anatomy course and mortality and morbidity conference. Fellow assignments will be made by the Trauma fellowship director.

Orthopedic Trauma Journal Club

The orthopedic trauma fellow, residents and attending staff are responsible for topic selection, review, and reading assignment on a monthly basis. The trauma fellow and attending will read every article to be presented by a resident during trauma journal club.


The orthopedic trauma fellow must complete at least one publishable research project. Fellow will have the support of a full-time ND, PhD, and research assistants. Further research; as well as, grant writing is encouraged and will be supported.


The orthopedic trauma fellow will assist the trauma attendings in the administration of the orthopedic trauma services. The attendings, particularly the director and associate director, will provide opportunity for the fellow to observe and be mentored in the organizational and administrative aspects of internal and external trauma system development.


The orthopedic trauma fellow will be provided the opportunity to attend several meetings sponsored by the AAOS and industry. The fellow will attend the annual meeting of the Orthopaedic Trauma Association in the fall. The department of Orthopedic Surgery will subsidize travel, hotel and meeting costs.

Program Statistics

Director: Dave Hak, MD
University Affiliation: University of Colorado Health Sciences Center
Hospital size: 500 beds
Length of fellowship: 1 year
Fellowship positions: 1
Stipend: $56,769+ benefits
Full-time Orthpaedic Trauma Faculty: 4
Trauma Admissions/year: 2,025
Emergency Department Encounters/Year: 46,423

Qualifications of Applicant

All candidates for this fellowship position must be graduates of approved residency programs and must obtain a valid Colorado medical license

ACGME Accredited