Shoulder & Elbow Fellowship

UPMC | Department of Orthopaedic Surgery | Shoulder and Elbow Fellowship


Christopher C. Schmidt, MD

Director of Shoulder & Elbow Fellowship
Department of Orthopaedic Surgery
University of Pittsburgh Medical Center
Co-Director Shoulder and Elbow Mechanics Laboratory
Swanson School of Engineering

The fellowship is designed to provide a thorough understanding of shoulder and elbow anatomy and pathologic conditions; it is also designed to teach the latest techniques in open, arthroscopic, and endoscopic surgery. The fellow will share rotation time at UPMC with Drs. Schmidt and Sotereanos and is projected to be involved in over 500 cases. The case load will include innovative surgeries like arthroscopic muscle transfers, revision total shoulder arthroplasties, arthroscopic and open elbow releases, and endoscopic and open distal biceps repairs. On a weekly basis, the fellow will also rotate with Dr. Lin, who will emphasize the sports medicine side of shoulder and elbow pathology. Dr. McMahon, currently the orthopaedic chief of the VA, will focus on the reconstructive aspects of shoulder and elbow surgery and will help foster a working relationship between the fellow and rotating UPMC orthopaedic residents.

The educational curriculum consists of weekly shoulder and elbow conferences, combined UPMC sports/shoulder and elbow conferences, bi-weekly cadaveric wet laboratories (scope equipment), bi-weekly research conferences, monthly journal clubs, and bi-monthly mortality and morbidity conferences. The curriculum is intended to provide the fellow an opportunity to develop a solid knowledge base and skill set on which to start his/her career.

The wet lab is integrated in the same space as our state-of-the-art engineering facility, which houses both our shoulder and elbow simulators. The lab is designed to help master the surgical skills needed to perform quality surgery. The fellow will be strongly encouraged to participate in on-going cadaveric/mechanical/radiographic studies investigating the distal biceps tendon, rotator cable/capsule, reverse shoulder arthroplasty, and more. Integration of the shoulder fellow with graduate engineering students and radiologists will help foster their understanding of the importance and power of cooperative interdisciplinary research. The fellow will be given dedicated time to practice their surgical skills and to perform valuable research.

Our fellowship has met the ASES’s quality standard requirements and as such will be participating in the 2020-2021 Orthopaedic Shoulder & Elbow Match. This year's interview dates will be virtual.

Dean G. Sotereanos, MD

Neer Circle Member of the American Shoulder and Elbow Surgeons

Co-Director of the Shoulder and Elbow Fellowship

Dr. Dean G. Sotereanos, Co-Director of the University of Pittsburgh Shoulder & Elbow Fellowship, talks about the mentorship, teaching, training and overall experience you'll receive during this fantastic fellowship program.

Attending Physicians


Christopher Schmidt, MD

Christopher C. Schmidt, M.D., is a nationally distinguished Shoulder and Elbow Surgeon. He serves as the Director of the Shoulder and Elbow Fellowship, Department of Orthopaedic Surgery at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. He specializes in rotator cuff repairs, shoulder and elbow replacements, instability repairs, nerve reconstructions, fracture care, and distal biceps re-attachments.


Dean Sotereanos, MD

Dean G. Sotereanos, MD, is a Neer Circle Member of the American Shoulder and Elbow Surgeons and is Co-Director of the Shoulder and Elbow Fellowship. He is nationally recognized for his work on chronic ulnar nerve compression, elbow instability, heterotopic ossification, total elbow arthroplasty, distal biceps tendon reconstructions, and more.


Albert Lin, MD

Albert Lin, MD, is an active member of the American Shoulder and Elbow Surgeons. In addition to his role in teaching the shoulder and elbow fellow in weekly conferences and in the operating room, Dr. Lin is the Associate Program Director for the UPMC Sports Medicine Fellowship and is Co-Director of the Pittsburgh Shoulder Institute.


Patrick McMahon, MD

Patrick McMahon, MD is a Neer Circle member of the American Shoulder and Elbow Surgeons. He is a Professor of Orthopaedic Surgery and Department of Bioengineering. He is nationally recognized for his sentinel research on rotator cuff tears, shoulder instability, and shoulder muscle transfers. He has experience in both academic and private practice settings.



Luis Carrazana-Suarez

Luis Carrazana-Suarez, MD is our current Shoulder and Elbow Fellow. Dr. Carrazanna-Suarez graduated medical school from the University of Puerto Rico. He completed his orthopaedic residency from the University of Puerto Rico School of Medicine.


Thomas Zink

Dr. Thomas Zink (Tom) was the first fellow to graduate from the Department of Orthopaedic Surgery, Shoulder and Elbow Fellowship at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center. Dr. Zink completed his orthopedic surgery residency in 2019 from OhioHealth Doctors Hospital in Columbus, Ohio.

Thomas Zink, Fellow,
Academic Year 2019-2020

Case Breakdown

ASES Accepted (1 Procedure/Patient)

Shoulder Arthroplasty


Shoulder Arthroscopy




Open Instability


L.D. or L.Trap. Transfer


Pectoralis Major Repairs


Shoulder Fusion


Elbow (Distal Biceps Repairs, Arthroscopic Osteochondral Arthroplasty, TEA)


Thomas Zink, DO, (COVID year) did 427 upper extremity patients (1181 procedures), 351 Shoulder & Elbow patients (20% Elbow)


Dr. Chris Schmidt, Fellowship Presentation


Dr. Albert Lin and Dr. Patrick McMahon, Staff Testimonials


Dr. Carrazana-Suarez, Current Fellow, Testimonial


Tour of Pittsburgh

Watch a virtual tour of Pittsburgh and learn more about the city.

Shoulder & Elbow Fellowship Conference Schedule 2020-2021

1 Rotator Cuff Anatomy Schmidt 8/3/2020
2 Total Elbow Arthroplasty Sotereanos 8/10/2020
3 SC Joint Disorders/Repair Lin 8/17/2020
4 Diagnosis/Treatment of SLAP Tears McMahon 8/24/2020
5 Pediatric Elbow Fractures Carrazana 8/31/2020
6 Pectoralis/Latissimus Dorsi Tears Lin 9/21/2020
7 M&M All 10/5/2020
8 Ulnar Nerve/ Nerve Injuries of Elbow Sotereanos 10/19/2020
9 Clavicle Fractures Lin 10/26/2020
10 Shoulder Instability: On & Off Trick (Soft Tissue) McMahon 11/2/2020
11 Shoulder Instability (Bone Procedures) Carrazana 11/16/2020
12 Distal Biceps Injuries Schmidt 11/30/2020
13 Fracture Distal Humerus/OCD Sotereanos 12/14/2020
14 TSA Lin 1/4/2021
15 Proximal Biceps Tendon McMahon 1/25/2021
16 AC Joint Disorders Carrazana 2/1/2021
17 Case Presentations All 2/8/2021
18 Proximal Humerus Fractures Schmidt 2/22/2021
19 Heterotopic Bone- Elbow Sotereanos 3/1/2021
20 Stiff Shoulder Lin 3/8/2021
21 Shoulder in Athletes McMahon 3/15/2021
22 RSA/TSA for Treatment of Glenohumeral Osteoarthritis in the Young Schmidt 3/29/2021
23 Radial Head Fractures Sotereanos 4/5/2021
24 Rotator Cuff 1 & 2 All 4/19/2021
25 RSA (Part 1: Biomechanics) Schmidt 5/3/2021
26 RSA (Part 2: Complications) Schmidt 5/10/2021
27 Elbow Arthritis (Part 1) Sotereanos 5/24/2021
28 RSA (Part 3: Complications) Schmidt 6/7/2021
29 Elbow Arthritis (Part 2) Sotereanos 6/14/2021
30 Physician Burnout Cases Lin 6/21/2021
31 MCL/LCL McMahon 6/28/2021
32 Non-repairable Rotator Cuff Tears Carrazana 7/5/2021
33 Nerve Injuries/Nerve Transfers Schmidt 7/12/2021
34 M&M All 7/19/2021
35 Investing/Practice Management Charlie 7/26/2021

Shoulder & Elbow Fellowship Clinical Teaching Lab Schedule 2020-2021


  • 9/14/20

    Tendon transfers (latissimus dorsi, pectoralis major, trapezius) for massive irreparable rotator cuff tears

  • 10/16/20

    Brachial plexus, ulnar nerve decompression, transposition, and supercharge nerve transfer

  • 10/30/20

    Anatomy Lab

  • 11/9/20

    Shoulder arthroscopy with suprascapular nerve decompression

  • 12/11/20

    Total shoulder arthroplasty

  • 1/15/21

    Open release for treatment of elbow contractures/osteoarthritis

  • 2/15/21

    Arthroscopic management of osteoarthritis in the elbow

  • 2/26/21

    Anatomy Lab

  • 3/19/21

    Elbow Collateral Ligament Reconstruction

  • 4/12/21

    Total elbow arthroplasty

  • 4/23/21

    Anatomy Lab

  • 5/17/21

    Superior capsule reconstruction for treatment of irreparable rotator cuffs

  • 6/18/21

    Arthroscopic labral repair

  • 7/16/21

    Internal joint stabilizer in elbow

Shoulder and Elbow Fellowship Journal Club Schedule 2020-2021




Schmidt 8/26/20 6:30-8:30PM
Schmidt 10/13/20 6:30-8:30PM
Lin 10/27/20 6:30-8:30PM
McMahon 11/25/20 6:30-8:30PM
Gause 1/27/21 6:30-8:30PM
Sotereanos 2/24/21 6:30-8:30PM
Lin 4/28/21 6:30-8:30PM
McMahon 6/30/21 6:30-8:30PM

Applicants are required to complete the application here. This year, interviews will be virtual.