Pediatric Headache Fellowship

February 6, 2019

The UTSW Children’s Health Pediatric Headache focused fellowship provides the trainee with in-patient and outpatient experiences at the major hospital systems affiliated with UT Southwestern. Tonia M Sabo, MD is the Pediatric Headache Fellowship Director and leads a headache trained medical care team including nursing, care coordinators, social work, nutrition, and Advanced Care Practioners to support the fellow.  Additional Pediatric specialists to train the fellow include faculty from Rehabilitation Medicine, Pediatric Stroke and Cerebrovascular disorders, Pain Management, Neurovestibular and Autonomic disorders, Craniofacial disorders and Neurosurgery.

The fellow will get additional in depth training, in post traumatic headache management with participation in the Neuroconcussion clinic, also led by Dr Sabo, which is also supported by Neuropsychology and Sports Neurology faculty. Neurodiagnostic methods of concussion diagnosis with transcranial Doppler and opportunity to work with a very active multidisciplinary research group at UTSW is available to the trainee.

There is a Sports Neurology and Rehabilitation track available for interested trainees with curriculum and training with Pediatric Sports Medicine, Pediatric Rehabilitation Medicine, advanced training in exercise physiology and “return to play” protocols,  athletic trainer  “on field” sports triage with a close working relationship with advanced Neuroimaging and other researchers.

Additional outpatient Headache and facial pain training will take place with affiliated adult Headache faculty, under the leadership of Dr Deborah Friedman, in the Aston Ambulatory Neurology and Parkland Outpatient clinics.  Dr Bert Vargas heads a satellite Headache and Sports Neurology clinic and treatment center located in north Dallas and provides the trainee with additional experience with procedural pain treatment and infusions.


Children’s Health System’s newly opened specialty care center at Cityville houses the outpatient Headache clinic. The Pediatric outpatient headache clinic and treatment center was specifically designed to enhance the learning experience for the fellow with state of the art media capable provider care team work spaces, procedure rooms and conference center with WebEx.

The clinic is located adjacent to a Pediatric Neurorehabiliation center equipped with mobility equipment from Switzerland, a specialized aquatic center, vestibular and visual “post concussive” recovery equipment. The Rehabilitation center is staffed by experienced occupational, physical and aquatic therapists provide treatment approaches emphasizing, “whole body” craniofacial, cervical, myofascial and autonomic associated treatments to aid in recovery from headache and facial pain disorders.

It is important to have the fellow exposed to inpatient diagnosis and treatment of headache disorders which are often associated with “secondary causes” for headache and treatment of refractory primary headache disorders (i.e. “status migranosus).

Inpatient headache consultation will be provided to support the Pediatric Neurology inpatient service and takes place at Children’s Medical Center Dallas, located in the Southwestern Medical District in the heart of Dallas.  Children’s Medical Center Dallas is home to the only academic healthcare system in North Texas that is dedicated exclusively to the comprehensive care of children from birth to age 18.

Children’s Health is one of the top pediatric hospitals in the country and the fifth largest healthcare provider in the nation. Children’s Medical Center Dallas provides more than 360,000 patient visits each year and is equipped with 487 inpatient beds which include 24 medical/surgical, 65 critical care, more than 50 outpatient specialty centers, a state-of-the-art emergency center and a 12-bed psych unit.


UCNS Headache Fellowship Curriculum

The Headache Fellowship at UT follows the curriculum proposed by United Council of Neurological Subspecialties which suggests a devoted “80 % clinical time” for appropriate training. The fellowship provides clinical and didactic training geared towards and to prepare the trainee to successfully master material required for UCNS Headache specialty board achievement. With this in mind, reading assignments, skills workshops, symposia, didactic, clinical and journal club conferences will provide indepth exposure to the clinical variety of headache related disorders found in IHS-3 Headache Classification System, important clinical trials and published material relevant to the study of headache.

Specific areas of targeted interest and research will be available as fellows demonstrate mastery of the general subject matter of the curriculum. Fellows meet regularly with faculty and the program director to provide feedback about performance and to advise the trainees. Fellows are encouraged to maintain a clinical log of patients and procedures which is evaluated with regard to diagnosis and management to assure that the diversity of primary and secondary headache cases have been seen and that an understanding of the material has been achieved.

Patients at the Southwestern Medical School teaching hospitals benefit from a close relationship between clinical medicine and basic science. A collaborative process exists between faculty physicians, doctoral and post-doctoral students and basic science researchers, fostering a dynamic approach to complicated problem solving. Patients experience true state-of-the-art medical care with research results brought rapidly to the bedside. Clinical headache research studies and protocols are offered to patients as they become available. Independent clinical or basic science research projects by fellows are encouraged.

Salary and benefits provided commiserate with level of training.

Please click here to apply, or contact the Fellowship Director directly for this opportunity:

Tonia Sabo, MD

Phone: 214-867-6906

Fax: 214-867-5654