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Orthopaedic Surgery - Shoulder & Elbow Fellowship, Royal Oak

Director's Message

Meet the director

Dr. Wiaters

Michael Wiater, MD
Fellowship Director, Orthopaedic Adult Reconstruction - Shoulder and Elbow
Orthopaedic Surgery - Shoulder & Elbow Fellowship, Royal Oak

Welcome to the Beaumont Health Shoulder and Elbow Fellowship Program. When I joined the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery at the Royal Oak, MI campus in 1999 after completing my shoulder and elbow fellowship training, I began building my practice from the ground up. Back in those days, relatively little shoulder and elbow surgery was being done in Michigan, particularly arthroplasty. Over the years as my clinical practice grew, I began putting the pieces into place to establish our own shoulder and elbow fellowship program, by educating other orthopaedic surgeons in the area, teaching our orthopaedic surgery residents and medical students state-of-the-art shoulder and elbow surgery, and establishing a dedicated clinical and basic research program with grant funding. In 2009, the Beaumont Health Adult Reconstructive Shoulder and Elbow Fellowship Program was founded and we matriculated our first twelve-month clinical fellow. We have trained one clinical fellow per year and have maintained full ACGME accreditation continuously since then. In addition, our fellowship is recognized by the American Shoulder and Elbow Surgeons.

The orthopaedic department consistently ranks in the top 25 departments of the US News and World Report and is comprised of nearly 50 fellowship-trained orthopaedic surgeons. We have an ACGME-accredited orthopaedic surgery residency program with 8 residents per year, and fellowships in spine, adult reconstruction – hip and knee, sports medicine, and foot and ankle surgery. The shoulder and elbow fellow has a close and collaborative working relationship with the orthopaedic residents and is accordingly expected to develop his or her teaching skills. Since Beaumont Health is the primary clinical teaching institution for the Oakland University William Beaumont School of Medicine, the fellow is also responsible for teaching and mentoring medical students.

The fellowship consists of the core faculty, J. Michael Wiater MD, Brett P. Wiater MD, and Alexander Martusiewicz MD, as well as multiple adjunct faculty in sports medicine, trauma, and hand/upper extremity. The fellowship is centered at the Royal Oak campus, which is one of the largest standalone medical centers in the country with over 1,100 inpatient beds and Level I trauma center status. The Royal Oak campus also houses the Beaumont Research Institute. Academics and research are an important part of the fellowship, with dedicated lab faculty available to facilitate research projects including database queries, and clinical trials. While the completion of one research project is required, most of our fellows accomplish more than that. Besides the Royal Oak campus, the fellow spends time at the Beaumont Health Troy and Taylor hospitals, which are smaller, community hospitals, as well as the UnaSource Surgical Center and Mi Ortho Surgery Center, which are a private ambulatory surgery facilities.

The fellow spends 2-3 days per week in the operating room and 1-2 days per week in the private office and the Beaumont Orthopaedic Institute, which is the primary outpatient teaching facility for the orthopaedic residents and fellows. Our fellows typically perform 700-800 surgeries per year, including complex and revision surgeries. Importantly, the fellow has one protected day per week free of clinical duties to allow ample time for research and academic pursuits. There are robust didactic teaching activities throughout the year, including a monthly shoulder and elbow journal club, weekly shoulder and elbow conference, Grand Rounds, gross anatomy cadaver course, and arthroscopy skills labs. The fellow attends numerous courses and conferences, including the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons and American Shoulder and Elbow Surgeons Annual Meetings.

Royal Oak and the surrounding communities in Southeast Michigan are pleasant places to live, with a reasonable cost of living, affordable housing, excellent schools, and great downtown areas with shopping and fine dining. Michigan and the surrounding Great Lakes offer superb four-season recreational opportunities nearby, including hiking, biking, fishing, boating, and hunting. Finally, the Greater Detroit metropolitan area offers cultural activities like major sporting events (Detroit Lions, Detroit Tigers, Detroit Red Wings, and Detroit Pistons), concerts, theatre, and museums.

While I am proud that we offer a well-rounded shoulder and elbow fellowship program with a high surgical volume, ample opportunities for teaching, robust didactics, and involvement in cutting-edge research, I am most proud of the fellows we have trained and the collegial relationship we maintain with them. Our graduates have become successful shoulder and elbow surgeons in both academic and private settings throughout the country. Thank you for taking the time to learn about our program and I hope you consider us highly. If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to contact us. 

J. Michael Wiater, MD

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