Hand and Upper Extremity Fellowship Program

For over 50 years, the partners of the Indiana Hand to Shoulder Center have been committed to an academic tradition of providing the highest quality postgraduate fellowship education to surgeons from across the United States.

Our mission is to train hand surgeons to be the best that they can be. Your fellowship year is the most impactful and important year of your medical training. Join us to make the most of it.

“A day in the life” of fellowship at IHTSC


Application Deadline
November 15, 2021

February through March

Start Date 
End of July


Contact Program Coordinator
Amanda Kipfer

8501 Harcourt Road
Indianapolis, IN 46260


(317) 471-4337


Program Details

7 Positions Available
1,000+ Number of Cases
11 Teaching Faculty


The didactic program at The Indiana Hand to Shoulder Center is robust. Over 50 lectures on topics spanning the corpus of hand and upper extremity surgery, coding, practice management, and therapy are given by our 11 teaching faculty, expert guest lecturers, and therapists. These sessions are augmented by weekly “Logic” sessions where topics receive a deep dive, fuzzy thinking is cleared, and knowledge gaps are found and filled.

Multiple labs provide hands-on skill training, from an “ER Boot Camp” at the beginning of the fellowship, to sessions on nerve repair and transfer, flaps, tendon transfers, and both arthroscopy and arthroplasty of the shoulder, elbow, wrist and hand. Our fellows also participate in monthly Journal Club, Quality Improvement conference, and Difficult Problems Conference.

Download Program Brochure

Indiana Hand to Shoulder Center
Indianapolis, IN

ACGME Program Number

Fellowship Director
F. Thomas D. Kaplan, MD

Program Requirements
Applicants must be board eligible, having completed formal training in: 

  • orthopedic surgery,
  • plastic surgery, or
  • general surgery


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IHTSC fellowship hands-on training
IHTSC physician with fellow

What to Expect

The Indiana Hand to Shoulder Center Hand and Upper Extremity Fellowship Program offers to its fellows one of the most comprehensive training experiences in the country.

This extensive exposure permits our graduates to offer their patients expertise in complete upper extremity care, while mastery of our field’s many disciplines allows our fellows to customize their clinical practice according to institutional needs or personal preferences.

As a fellow, you’ll have the opportunity to be involved in a wide variety of hand surgery cases, including:

  • Arthroscopy (small joint, wrist, elbow, shoulder)
  • Microsurgery (replant, revascularization, nerve surgery, free flaps)
  • Congenital hand surgery
  • Pediatric hand surgery
  • Upper extremity soft tissue coverage
  • Brachial plexus (adult and pediatric)
  • Upper extremity trauma (clavicle to fingertip)
  • Nerve surgery (repair, transfer, TMR, neuroma management)
  • Joint arthroplasty (small joint, wrist, elbow, shoulder)

Fellows are provided a weekly case schedule and encouraged to participate in those surgeries they want more exposure to, allowing a degree of customization to their fellowship experience.

Unlike a lot of academic centers, our fellows also learn how to navigate the complex changing healthcare world. You’ll learn everything from coding to how to be a boss and run your own practice.

Meet Our Fellows

Program Alumni

We have educated over 250 postgraduate surgeons

Our fellows have gone on to serve as president of the American Society for Surgery of the Hand (ASSH) and department chairs. They also include research powerhouses, inventors of surgical techniques and devices, and—more often than not—the best hand surgeons in their communities.

Map of our alumni

Class of 2021–22

  • Francis J Aversano, MD
    Francis J Aversano, MD Washington University Orthopedic Residency
  • Priscilla Cavanaugh, MD
    Priscilla Cavanaugh, MD Jefferson University Hospital Orthopedic Residency
  • Zachary Finley headshot
    Zachary Finley, MD Tulane University School of Medicine Orthopedic Residency
  • Aaron Gray headshot
    Aaron Gray, MD University of Nevada, Las Vegas Medical Center Orthopedic Residency
  • Alexander Hahn headshot
    Alexander Hahn, MD University of Maryland Medical Center Orthopedic Residency
  • Kent Rinehart head shot
    Kent Rinehart, MD University of Nebraska Medical Center Orthopedic Residency

It’s the best year of your life. That’s what I wanted—I wanted to learn a lot and get the best training possible.

— Peter Henning, MD (2020–21)
Indianapolis skyline

Life in Indianapolis

Indianapolis, known as the “Crossroads of America” and “Amateur Sports Capital of the World,” enjoys a cost of living that is below the national average despite vibrant growth.

Indy (as it’s known locally) is blessed with plenty of green space, glistening waterways, and remarkable memorials—making for a charmingly picturesque city.

The city is well-known for auto-racing and recognized internationally as a sports center because it’s home to the NCAA’s headquarters and professional football, basketball, baseball, hockey, and soccer teams.

Indianapolis also has a vibrant arts community, with an internationally recognized symphony, opera, and ballet, as well as excellent museums, including the world’s largest children’s museum.

Plan a visit to Indiana

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Questions? Call Amanda Kipfer at (317) 471-4337