Javascript is currently not supported, or is disabled by this browser. Please enable Javascript for full functionality.

Skip to Main Content
University of Pittsburgh    
2021-2022 Graduate & Professional Studies Catalog 
  Apr 20, 2024
2021-2022 Graduate & Professional Studies Catalog [Archived Catalog]

Dental Anesthesiology Certificate

Return to Academic Programs Return to: Academic Programs

The Department of Dental Anesthesiology directs and coordinates the three-year, CODA accredited, dental anesthesiology residency program. The goal of this program is to prepare dentists to manage pain and anxiety in adult, pediatric and special needs patients by using pharmacologic and non-pharmacologic techniques.  A significant portion of the University of Pittsburgh School of Dental Medicine Residency Program in Dental Anesthesiology is a unit of the medical anesthesiology residency program, administered through the UPMC Medical Education Program (UPMC-MEP). At the conclusion of the program, the dentist will earn a certificate in dental anesthesiology and be proficient in providing all levels of anesthesia services for ambulatory patients undergoing a variety of medical and dental procedures.
A maximum of four dental anesthesiology residents are selected each year. They have the same responsibilities and are expected to meet the same competencies as medical residents. Residents in dental anesthesiology have standard postgraduate salaries and benefits.       

Program Description by Year

The first year of the resident’s clinical experience begins at the dental school with the resident attending all introductory courses and conferences in anesthesiology intended for post-graduate first-year residents. The dental resident becomes familiar with the anesthetic management of patients undergoing an array of dental procedures, including pediatric, special needs, oral surgery and implant surgery. Within this first year, one month is devoted to training in pediatric emergency medicine. The first-year residents are also responsible for teaching a course in medical emergencies to the other dental residents at the school. 

The second and third years of the residency continue with rotations through UPMC Presbyterian and Montefiore Hospitals, UPMC St. Margaret’s, Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC, and Magee-Womens Hospital, along with one-month off-service rotations in: internal medicine, critical care medicine and advanced lung disease. During this rotation cycle, residents will participate in the anesthetic management of patients undergoing general surgery, complex head and neck procedures, orthopedic surgery, and transplantation operations.  Three months at UPMC St. Margaret’s will provide experience in a high-paced operating room that prepares the resident for private practice. Regional anesthesia and advanced pain management techniques are also developed. Children’s Hospital of Pittsburgh of UPMC offers a diversity of experiences in managing the anesthetic requirements of children of all physical sizes and ages who are undergoing a wide variety of surgical procedures. Magee-Womens Hospital gives the resident an opportunity to learn about epidural and spinal anesthesia techniques intended for obstetric procedures. Magee-Womens Hospital utilizes an after-hours call schedule. The residents will be present at the dental school for several months in the second and third years providing clinical care and spending time with the adjunct faculty in private practice.

A focus of the training includes developing skills in the management of special needs patients receiving dental care. The University of Pittsburgh School of Dental Medicine has an active Center for Patients with Special Needs that provides the resident with a unique opportunity to provide anesthesia services to this underserved population. Residents will take part in regular journal reviews of current literature and a structured lecture series in anesthesiology. In addition, residents are expected to attend at least one national conference per year and initiate work on a mentored clinical research project.

The applicant must submit the American Dental Education Association Postdoctoral Application Support Service (ADEA PASS) application and register for the Match Program.

Learn more about requirements and application to the program by visiting


The advanced general dentistry education program in dental anesthesiology is accredited by the Commission on Dental Accreditation (CODA). The Commission is a specialized accrediting body recognized by the United States Department of Education. The Commission on Dental Accreditation can be contacted at 312-440-4653, or at 211 East Chicago Avenue, Chicago, IL, 60611. The Commission’s web address is

Return to Academic Programs Return to: Academic Programs

Catalog Navigation