A resident-oriented research curriculum, extending across the three years of residency, provides a structure for residents to be involved in meaningful, longitudinal research projects. Beginning intern year, we supervise and guide the selection of mentors and help cultivate informal relationships that develop on the wards. During the PGY-2 year, residents participate in a special course to learn research basics including topics such as IRB application, practical biostatistics and study design.
We also offer the ABIM Research Pathway Track for qualified applicants with previous research experience. After completion of two years of Internal Medicine, residents on this track go directly into fellowship, typically with additional research years during fellowship (please note that a separate application is required for this option).
All Internal Medicine residents are required to perform a research project during their residency. This fosters an understanding of research techniques, biostatistics and interpretation of the literature. Research opportunities are available within all subspecialties and in the basic sciences. The resident outpatient practice, University Medical Associates, offers another source for clinical research projects.
All residents present their research at the end of their third year at the Carey-Marshall-Thorner Research Conference, a university-wide research day. Many residents also publish and present their work at state and national meetings (e.g., American College of Physicians).
Note: If you would like to explore basic or clinical research in greater depth during your residency, please indicate this at the time you arrange an interview and identify one or two subspecialty areas that interest you. We will arrange a tour of our research facilities and a time for you to meet with faculty investigators in your areas of interest.
It was a really amazing to take a study from idea to
protocol to enrollment by the end of my intern year
“There are lots of opportunities to get
meaningfully involved in research at UVA. Everywhere I looked, senior
attendings were happy to go out of there way to get residents involved.
Most people start looking for projects by the end of the first year as
the research methods course gets started. I was lucky enough to get
started early in my first year with the GI department, and had more
opportunities than time to pursue after that. My research has primarily
focused on the "luminal" side of GI.
UVA's commitment to research is seen through
the ample opportunities that exist to pursue your specific
“The Internal Medicine Residency Program at the University of Virginia fosters intellectual curiosity among residents and supports the pursuit of knowledge through research opportunities. Immediately upon commencing my Residency at UVA, I was paired with a mentor tailored to my specific research interests. With the intent to pursue a fellowship in Cardiovascular Medicine, I was extremely pleased with the ease at which I was able to find a mentor in the Cardiology Department.
Since the start of residency, my research mentor and I have published one research project focused on heart rate variability in burn trauma patients. Heart rate variability (HRV) is a noninvasive technique to assess the degree of fluctuations between the intervals of normal heartbeats and has been proven to be deranged in various pathological states. Since patients who suffer burns demonstrate evidence of cardiac myocyte death despite hyperdynamic left ventricular function via echocardiography, we attempted to identify patients in the immediate post burn period at risk for a complicated hospital course and death. Two specific HRV measurements were found to be inversely related to the percent of total body surface area affected by the burn. Most importantly, these two parameters (standard deviation of NN intervals and low frequency power) were shown to be a strong predictor of death and possibly to a greater extent than the percent of total body surface area affected by the burn. Our study suggests that deranged HRV in the early post burn period when combined with the percent of total body surface area affected by burn may result in improved risk prediction in this patient population. We think that medications such as beta blockers that improve HRV may prove to be a prophylactic, therapeutic intervention in burn trauma patients.
UVA’s commitment to research is seen through the ample opportunities that exist to pursue your specific interests, the supportive faculty that are highly respected within their individual fields, and the program’s requirement for residents to present research at the annual Scholars' and Research Day. By requiring PGY2’s to identify a research mentor and offering residents dedicated research blocks, we are able to put enough time into a project to see it to fruition."