Training & Curriculum
Since its inception in 1902, Cedars-Sinai has evolved to become the largest nonprofit hospital in the western United States and provides the best patient care modern medicine has to offer. Under the direction of Nancy Sicotte, MD, the Cedars-Sinai Multiple Sclerosis and Neuroimmunology Center has become a nationally recognized program that delivers multidisciplinary personalized care to people living with multiple sclerosis (PwMS) and related disorders. The clinic has been designated as a Center for Comprehensive Care by the National Multiple Sclerosis Society and is a member of the Consortium of Multiple Sclerosis Centers. The faculty of five fellowship-trained MS neurologists are supported by physiatrists, radiologists, ophthalmologists, rheumatologists, and physical and occupational therapists who work together to evaluate, diagnose and provide treatment to a diverse patient population. Fellows will have the opportunity to participate in inpatient consults on patients with more challenging neuroimmune cases from our 900-bed main hospital, Guerin Children’s and Neuroscience Critical Care Unit.
We care for over 2000 patients and evaluated 300 new patients in the past year with diagnoses including MS, neuromyelitis optica spectrum disorder (NMOSD), myelin oligodendrocyte glycoprotein antibody disease (MOGAD), autoimmune encephalitis and neurosarcoidosis. We are engaged in a variety of ongoing clinical trials funded by the National Institutes of Health, the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) and other healthcare foundations. Our team works together on novel biomarker development, with the ultimate goal of validating new tools for accurate diagnosis, prognosis and monitoring of MS and related disorders. Our clinic includes a state-of-the-art visual outcomes lab overseen by Omar Al-Louzi, MD. Pascal Sati, MD, directs the innovative Neuroimaging Program focused on imaging biomarkers, including central vein sign and paramagnetic rim lesions. Marwa Kaisey, MD, leads our fluid biomarker initiative and liaises with the main Cedars-Sinai biobank. Brooke Guerrero, MD, sees patients at Cedars-Sinai and is integrated into the Los Angeles County Health System at Olive View Medical Center and Rancho Los Amigos Rehabilitation Center, providing access to an underserved patient population for trainees. Rotations at Olive View Medical Center and the California Rehabilitation Institute further enhance exposure to other MS-related clinical settings and diverse populations. Paula Barreras, MD, our newest faculty member, also works with the Cedars-Sinai sarcoidosis group.
We offer a one-year clinical training program and a two- to three-year combined clinical and research training program. Training plans are designed to meet the objectives of each individual fellow with their career goals in mind.
Our comprehensive clinical curriculum aims to provide fellows with the following learning goals:
- Application of revised McDonald criteria to accurately diagnose MS.
- Appropriately order and interpret diagnostic modalities such as conventional and advanced MRI analysis, CSF analysis, fluid biomarkers and visual testing in the diagnosis of MS.
- How to recognize MS mimics and initiate appropriate investigation to pursue diagnoses other than MS.
- Gain experience with using multiple FDA-approved disease modifying therapies (DMTs), and agents used off label as DMTs, and prescribe them as may be appropriate for each individual patient.
- Describe guidelines and monitor patients appropriately to determine the necessity for changing DMTs.
- Manage symptoms and improve function and quality of life by utilizing appropriate pharmacologic and rehabilitative strategies.
- The ability to discuss psychosocial/vocational/long-term planning issues such as disability, disclosure of illness to employers, advance directives, etc.
- The ability to work with and ultimately lead a multidisciplinary team and utilize non-neurologist and non-physician healthcare providers as may be needed.
Conferences and Didactics
- Fellows will have the opportunity to participate in the following conferences and didactic activities— allowing them to continuously build on their clinical acumen and educational skills:
- Neuroimmunology/MS case conferences: monthly
- Noon conference lecture series
- Neuroimmunology/MS research conference: biweekly
- Neurology grand rounds conference: weekly
- Americas Committee for Treatment and Research in Multiple Sclerosis (ACTRIMS) didactic webinar series: weekly/biweekly
- Interdisciplinary case conferences: biweekly
- Center for Neural Science and Medicine seminar series: monthly
- The Cedars-Sinai Clinical Scholars Program is an optional program that instructs participants in biostatistics, study design and grant writing.
Have Questions or Need Help?
Contact us if you have questions or would like to learn more about the Multiple Sclerosis (MS) and Neuroimmunology Fellowship at Cedars-Sinai.
Neurosciences Education Office
127 S. San Vicente Blvd., Suite A6600
Los Angeles, CA 90048