Renal-electrolyte and hypertension division conferences

All faculty, fellows, residents, and students at the University of Pennsylvania are invited to attend the conferences held by the Renal-Electrolyte and Hypertension Division. Faculty and Fellows of the Division are encouraged to suggest specific topics and areas of interest for conferences. All conferences (except  the Delaware Valley First Year Renal Fellows Conference) are held in the McCurdy Conference Room/One Founders Pavilion

For the first time in 2008, a Delaware Valley First Year Renal Fellows Conference will be held in early July with fellows and faculty from most of the region’s nephrology training programs. Topics are presented in lecture and case discussion format, addressing areas of special interest to incoming first year clinical fellows, such as fluid-electrolyte disorders, glomerular diseases, acute renal failure, hypertension, etc.

In addition, for first and second year fellows, the division conducts a series of summer conferences addressing various topics of interest to first and second year fellows, designed to complement the first year fellows program. Special emphasis is on care of nephrology patients in the ambulatory setting with chronic kidney disease and ESRD. The focus is on presentation and discussion of such things as clinical practice guidelines, “best practices”, and recently published major clinical trials and review articles.



Fellows Case Conference
This conference provides a venue to discuss cases presented by first and second year fellows with the Fellowship Program Director and other faculty in a “Resident’s Report” format. The goal of this conference is to review complex diagnostic and therapeutic issues in nephrology using a case-based format. The conference is held every two weeks throughout most of the year. First and second year fellows present cases for each conference; both inpatient and outpatient cases are discussed.

Ambulatory Clinic Case Conferences
Following first and second year fellow continuity clinical practice sessions, the preceptor discusses patients seen that day in clinic. For first year fellow’s clinics, a brief didactic session based on an established year-long curriculum is provided at each clinic session to review practical aspects of nephrology specifically related to the care of patients in the ambulatory setting.uic session based on an established year-long curriculum is provided at each clinic session to review practical aspects of nephrology specifically related to the care of patients in the ambulatory setting.



The Transplant Conference is devoted to issues related to kidney and kidney/pancreas transplantation. The conference format varies from week to week and includes a Journal Club, didactic presentations, transplant biopsy conference, and research/clinical epidemiology conference. Occasionally visiting speakers are invited to present as well. This conference series is under the direction of Dr. Roy Bloom, Medical Director Kidney, Kidney and Pancreas Transplant Programs. Conferences are led by members of the Renal-Electrolyte and Hypertension Division faculty with special interest and expertise in transplantation as well as faculty from the Department of Surgery, other Divisions and Departments, and advanced fellows taking additional training in renal transplantation.



The Thursday conferences typically begins after Labor Day, and alternates between Journal Club and Research Conference; with additional Physiology and Clinical Epidemiology Conferences.

Journal Club
For Journal Club, fellows or faculty select an article and subject matter they find interesting, and are responsible for leading the discussion of the paper. The article should serve as a springboard for a review of the literature and general discussion of a specific topic. It is expected that rigorous studies of scientific and clinical interest will be selected from general medical journals such as NEJM, Annals of Internal Medicine, Archives of Internal Medicine or JAMA, nephrology journals such as Kidney International, JASN, AJKD, CJASN, and basic science journals such as AJP-Renal Physiology, JCI, Nature, etc. Articles are selected on   a rotating basis to cover either clinical or basic science topics. Articles should be of interest to, and understandable by, all attendees. Fellows responsible for selecting an article must identify a faculty member who will approve the article selection and presentation and accept responsibility for assuring the quality of the review at Journal Club. The discussion of the selected article should inform the group about the relevance of the study to nephrology, the importance of the research questions, research methodology, significance of the study findings, and issues pertinent to understanding and interpreting the study. The articles should be distributed at least one week prior to conference, by sending a pdf file of the article to Nancy Wells (

Research Conference

These sessions are developed to form discussions of ongoing research of the training grant faculty, clinical research faculty, and research fellows. The purpose is to stimulate and encourage interaction and collaboration, as well as to educate prospective and current research fellows about the various research opportunities from which they will choose for their research years. These conferences are also designed to allow research trainees to present progress reports of ongoing or completed work in a formal session for critical review and discussion. Trainees formally present their work once a year. Feedback is provided during the conference and in individual meetings with trainees and program directors. Sessions on research in Clinical Epidemiology  are also held several times each year, presented by faculty with special training and expertise in clinical epidemiology and biostatistics.  One to two sessions per year on ethical and regulatory issues in research are also included in this conference series.


Renal Grand Rounds are mostly cased-based presentations by faculty and fellows, with review of the literature pertaining to the case being presented. Approximately six to eight times each year, Visiting Professors present their ongoing clinical and basic research or address other special topics of interest. Several times each year faculty from the Department of Pathology, Children's Hospital of Philadelphia (CHOP),and other Penn Departments (Medical Ethics, Urology, Medical Genetics, etc) present at Renal Grand Rounds.




Core Topic Conferences are held twice each month throughout most of the year, alternating with Fellows Case Conference. These sessions are devoted to major specific topics in nephrology that are felt to be of importance and relevance to nephrology trainees, including general clinical nephrology, hypertension, dialysis, clinical pharmacology, and critical care nephrology. Topics are suggested by fellows and faculty; presentations by faculty of the Renal Division provide in-depth, up to date reviews of each topic.  Many of the topics rotate over a 2 year cycle, with new topics added as appropriate. Presentations may take the form of didactic lectures, case-based discussion, and/or review of classic and/or contemporary papers on the selected topic. In general fellows are provided with at least one or two relevant articles to be read in preparation for the conference.  Materials used for these presentations (PowerPoint presentation, articles, etc) are made available to fellows who are unable to attend.


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