Department of Surgery

Surgery Core Clerkship

Media Component
Scott Holmes
Faculty members guide residents through a simulation exercise.

The Michael E. DeBakey Department of Surgery and Clerkship Director, Dr. Yesenia Rojas-Khalil, welcomes students to their core clerkship. The mission of the Michael E. DeBakey Department of Surgery is to inspire the next generation of surgeons by providing medical students, and physician assistants, with a balanced surgical experience that will meet core surgical competencies in both knowledge and skills.

This eight-week core rotation is divided into one one-month rotation and two two-week rotations. Core medical students spend one month on a general surgery service (Texas Children’s Hospital, Baylor St. Luke's Medical Center, Ben Taub Hospital, or Michael E. DeBakey VA Medical Center), two weeks on a surgical subspecialty service (cardiothoracic surgery, transplant surgery, vascular surgery and general thoracic surgery) and two weeks at the Ben Taub Emergency Center.

Students who are physician assistants spend one month on a general surgery service and one month in the Ben Taub Emergency Center.


Basic Surgical Competencies


The following are basic surgical competencies that each student should obtain during their core surgical clerkship:

  • Basic management of trauma patients
  • Understand principles of perioperative care
  • Understand basic principles of critical care
  • Management of common surgical complications
  • Recognition and management of: shock - ABCS; acute abdomen; diseases of the biliary tract; breast cancer/disease; surgical disease of the chest
  • Recognition and management of: vascular disease, including ischemic limb, aneurysmal disease and veno-occlusive disease; surgical diseases in children; soft tissue infections (i.e. diabetic foot)
  • Surgery clerkship competencies map
  • Core Competency Graduation Goals
M.D. Program Core Clerkships