International Hand Surgery Fellowships

Applications period is now closed.

The International Hand Surgery Fellowship offers a unique opportunity for U.S. hand surgeons in the early phase of their training to participate in a visiting fellowship abroad, either in China or India.  Participating fellows will gain hands-on operative experience with a high volume of complex upper extremity trauma, brachial plexus injuries and nerve transfers, microsurgery and flaps for the upper extremity reconstruction and congenital hand deformities. This volume of operative experience is not currently available in any U.S. institution. Our hope is that those fellows that participate in the International Fellowship will return to the United States and teach future generations of residents and fellows the important surgical techniques that they learned.


Up to three recipients will be selected to participate in a 3-month fellowship in either China or India. Unlike other visiting fellowships, the selected U.S. hand fellows will be allowed to scrub in as an assistant on all operations during their fellowship.  Each recipient will receive a travel stipend of $14,500 to cover travel and cost of living.  The stipend is also intended to cover the cost of travel and registration to attend and present their experience at the 2019 Adrian E. Flatt Residents and Fellows Conference on September 4, 2019 in Las Vegas, NV.

Fellowship Sites

In China, the fellows will visit and operate at 4 different sites:

  • Sun Yat-sen University Hospital, Guangzhou
  • Feng Cheng Hospital, Xi’an (a 200 bed hospital dedicated exclusively to hand surgery and microsurgery)
  • Jiao Tong University / Sixth People’s Hospital, Shanghai
  • Huashan Hospital / Fudan University, Beijing (dedicated exclusively to hand surgery and microsurgery)

In India, the fellows will operate at:

  • Ganga Hospital, Coimbatore (the only hospital in India dedicated exclusively to hand surgery and microsurgery)

The program organizers at each site will organize housing and assist with booking any inter-country travel required.


Open to any ASSH Candidate Member, completing an ACGME-accredited fellowship in hand surgery in 2018, or to practicing hand surgeons, up to five years post-fellowship.


  • Personal statement describing how this International Fellowship would impact their career.
  • Outline of desired career path, including professional involvement in the ASSH.
  • C.V.
  • Letter of support from Fellowship Director or institution.
  • Preferred start date and region - India or China. Successful applicants may choose a 3-month period to suit their personal situation, but must begin between September 15, 2018 and March 1, 2019.  All fellowships must conclude by the end of May 2019. 

Please note:

  • India requires a three-month’s notice to arrange for a medical license.  If you are selecting India as a region of interest, please do not select a start date earlier than October 15, 2018.
  • Selected Fellows will be required to submit a copy of his or her U.S. Medical License, and will also be responsible for maintaining a current passport and obtaining a visa.

The application period for 2018 is now closed.


The selection committee expects to notify applicants by the end of July.  For questions, please contact the AFSH at [email protected] or call 312-880-1900.


  • Fellows will be required to prepare a written report detailing their case list and overall evaluation of their experience within 3-months of concluding the fellowship.
  • Each Fellow will be invited to share his or her experience in a 5-minute presentation at the 2019 Adrian E. Flatt Residents & Fellows Conference on Wednesday, September 4 in Las Vegas, NV
  • A final report will be requested 24-months post-fellowship, to include a short personal paragraph describing how the fellowship has impacted their current practice, and any papers or posters generated their fellowship.
  • Participants will be encouraged to document their experience, including the use of intra-operative photographs and high-definition video which can later be edited and submitted for use on Hand-e.

The International Hand Surgery Fellowship program is sponsored by the American Society for Surgery of the Hand and funded by the American Foundation for Surgery of the Hand.


This program is made possible in part, by a generous education grant received from the following corporate partners. 



Testimonials from the 2017 Fellows

"This was an unparalleled experience, especially with respect to exposure to microsurgery and peripheral nerve surgery. A combination of high volume and regionalization of subspecialty care creates opportunities for high-yield learning in a short period of time. I thoroughly enjoyed my time in China and new colleagues I now consider friends." - Aaron Berger, MD, PhD

I feel so fortunate to have been selected for the IHSF. The educational, technical and cultural experiences were truly life-altering and will serve as a springboard for my future practice in hand surgery.” - Joseph V. Buckwalter, MD

"This fellowship has been an incredible asset to my training; in 3 months I have experienced more brachial plexus and reconstructive micro than most can experience over the course of 2 years of training. The deep friendships with international colleagues has been so enriching. It has also allowed me to see the need for further innovation and continued growth of the field of hand surgery in the US." - Jacques Hacquerbord, MD