All Case medical students complete a core clerkship in Neuroscience during their third year of medical school.  Our clerkship is directed by Dr. Alan Hoffer of the Department of Neurological Surgery and Dr. Wei Xiong of the Department of Neurology.  The clerkship allows students direct hands-on experience caring for patients with a wide variety of neurological disorders.  Students participate actively on the clinical service under the supervision of Neurosurgery and Neurology residents and attendings.

During the time spent on the Neurosurgery service, students have the opportunity to participate in patient management in both inpatient and outpatient settings with emphasis placed on an understanding of neurosurgical pathophysiology and operating room experience. Students work with the residents on the pediatric and adult inpatient service, and closely follow two or more patients per week.  Students write daily progress notes, assist in the perioperative management of these patients, write an admission history and physical exam, if applicable, and follow up on any diagnostic testing.  Students select patients to follow in collaboration with the chief resident and/or the neurosurgery faculty.

Didactic sessions for the Neuroscience clerkship are held on Friday mornings.  A wide range of neurologic and neurosurgical topics are covered by faculty members from both departments. The lectures cover the gamut of neurological and neurosurgical disease processes and treatments.  Neurosurgery lectures include such topics as cerebrovascular disease, brain tumors, hydrocephalus, spinal disorders, head trauma and doctor-patient communication.  

For more information, please contact Dr. Hoffer at or Lois Hengenius at