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low score on step 1... but want to do IM

Discussion in 'Internal Medicine and IM Subspecialties' started by theunderdog, 07.20.08.

  1. theunderdog

    theunderdog Medical Student (Slave)

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    i got my step 1 score last week -- 188/76. i'm a US med student in a MD program.

    i want to go home and do my residency in NYC (brooklyn, manhattan, queens, flushing, bronx, etc). i still want to do IM.

    i know i need a solid step 2 now.

    i'm just feeling so depressed from my step 1 score.

    anyone know of any success stories with low step 1, but matching in where they want to go in IM?

    thanks. i appreciate any advice.
  2. gutonc

    gutonc No Meat, No Treat Administrator SDN Senior Moderator

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    You're probably not getting into Columbia or Cornell (or NYU or MSSM) w/ that score. Which leaves 41 programs by my count on Frieda (granted, a large # of them are really bad community FMG factories but there are still some really good places in that list) in the 5 boroughs and Nassau (not counting NJ programs) that you wouldn't necessarily be shut out of.

    So rock your clinicals. Get great LORs. Take Step 2 early (Next June or July) and kick it's a$$. Go from there.

    Good lu,
  3. theunderdog

    theunderdog Medical Student (Slave)

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    hey, thanks for your words of wisdom and your reply, gutonc. you sound like my preceptor from 2nd year of med school!

    MSSM was probably top of my list, but in a way, after my step 1 bomb, my eyes are getting more and more open. NJ would be nice too, but i heard NJ residencies are flooded with IMGs. not that that's bad or anything, but when it comes down to camaraderie, it's harder to relate to.

    i'm aiming more for SUNY brooklyn, st.luke's-roosevelt, and ny methodist. and MSSM if i can!
  4. HarryRosenMD

    HarryRosenMD MedConsult Publishing

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    Hi...

    Although you may be down on your score... you can absolutely match into IM in NY.

    1. Broaden out you perspective application sites... as even a less desirable program (for whatever reason) would be better than potentially scrambling
    2. Make friends and contacts during your rotations in NY
    3. Don't let a test define you... SHOW others who you are
    4. Show your clinical bent by doing well on STEP 2 (>200, esp. >220)



    Hope that helps
  5. theunderdog

    theunderdog Medical Student (Slave)

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    Thanks for your reply! I got a lot of feedback through PMs as well. I hate how the step 1 is heavily weighed in the process. I'm going to study hard for step 2.

    I just wanted to go home to the Northeast area, because I've gone to college and med school far away from home. I just miss home, my family, and friends.

    Thanks again for the reply.
  6. HarryRosenMD

    HarryRosenMD MedConsult Publishing

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    Anytime. Good luck... and feel free to contact me with any questions.
  7. Amelia

    Amelia

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    With a 188/76 you might find IMGs might be a good crowd to work with, many have 99's on both steps to work in this country and would most likely know more than a "U.S. grad" who got only 188/76 on step 1. With that score you basically are seen as bottom of the class in terms of competitiveness, FMG or not.
  8. theunderdog

    theunderdog Medical Student (Slave)

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    Thanks for your input. It would be harder for me to relate to IMGs, as mentioned in my previous post, because of difference in education, background, experience, etc. This should not be misinterpreted that I did not want to work with or go to a residency with IMGs. In fact, it would be a pleasure to work with IMGs to diversify my knowledge.

    But, no offense taken from your comments. I'm sure many would disagree with your assessment that the step 1 number determines how much clinical knowledge that you know or how good of a doctor you will become. I also disagree with your view that you look down on people with lower scores than you. But again, I am not offended. Thanks for your reply.
  9. dragonfly99

    dragonfly99

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    You can definitely match in internal med somewhere.
    Agree that your score would likely keep you out of the more Ivy-League type of places, but there are a lot of others.

    A better step 2 score would really help your application, but don't obsess so much that you forget that doing well in 3rd year is more important. If you do well on step 2 but got bad grades during 3rd year they won't care how well you do on Step 2. I got 18 points higher on Step 2 vs. Step 1, and I think some of that was being able to set myself up to succeed. With step 1 you are basically forced to take it right after being burned out from hard 2nd year classes. With Step 2 you have some choice of when you take it. I disagree with the poster who said you need to take it next summer. I think most programs don't even send out interview invites until November...you could take it Sept or so and I would think have plenty of time to get your scores. I had good luck on Step 2 by reading the Rx for Boards book, plus the First Aid for Step 2.
  10. DrJosephKim

    DrJosephKim Advisor SDN Advisor

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    Get strong letters.

    Get involved with clinical research if you're thinking about any type of fellowship.

    These can be much more valuable than your step 1 score.
  11. theunderdog

    theunderdog Medical Student (Slave)

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    thanks dragonfly and mdjkin for the advice! i was just getting worried that step 1 is such a major factor that residencies overlook all other aspects... i'm glad i was involved in ER research last summer that led to a publication. and i'm more excited about 3rd year, now that i'm in my first rotation. thanks again for the input.
  12. Jaded

    Jaded

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    What a mature response!!!! I can tell that you are going to make wonderful IM physician just from your coment.
  13. Jaded

    Jaded

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    What a mature response!!!! I can tell that you are going to make wonderful IM physician just from your coment.
  14. phisigman03

    phisigman03 Member

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    Agreed that a 188/76 will keep you out of top programs. So what kind of score will get you in or even considered for interviews? 210-220?? or is that still too low for IM?
  15. king of scut

    king of scut New Member

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    dont worry about your score. i bombed my step1 too - only a few points higher than yours and i got an interview at mssm. i ranked a different program (top 5 nyc) higher and got into my first choice and matched into my first choice for fellowship. research helps. so does knowing what you want to do and demonstrating that you want to do it.
    im glad that youre not getting bent out of shape over the comment about the FMGs who 'know more than you' because they scored higher. keep your eye on the prize.
  16. docscience

    docscience AZCOM (Junior Member)

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    Congrats! I just looked at their webpage for internal medicine and there are some awesome global health programs also. Are these more competitive? Research helps? Any kind of research or internal medicine research?

    Can you PM me more of your stats if you don't mind? I am not top of my class at all...100/148 or so. Does that make a difference? Thanks!
  17. docscience

    docscience AZCOM (Junior Member)

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    Also, does anyone know if a presentation of research can be listed on your residency applications? I did some summer research and I am not sure if I can get a paper out of it...but got some great data on the subject.

    Will this be considered as some research? Thanks again.
  18. Bun

    Bun Member

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    I did poorly on step one as well, but did well in clinicals and >220 on step II. Got tons of interviews for IM and matched at my 1st choice. Don't get bent out of shape over your score. Just do your best to do better on step II.

    Internal medicine is a buyers market. No matter what the FMG's w/ 99s on step I tell you, you are still preferred over them at basically all IM residencies. Sucks for them, great for you.
  19. Doctor G

    Doctor G Member

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    Is this also true for D.O. applicants, that we are still preferred over FMGs?
  20. docscience

    docscience AZCOM (Junior Member)

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    Can any of the older guys/gals (those with experience) answer the last 5 or 6 questions? Would love to know the answers...thanks again.
  21. bkpa2med

    bkpa2med

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    Yes we are. It goes something like this:

    US MD
    US DO
    US IMG
    FMG

    Also understand that US DO and US IMG spots can vary depending on the hospitals.
  22. docscience

    docscience AZCOM (Junior Member)

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    What kind of research is valuable for internal medicine?

    What about having a masters degree? In physiology? Do you think any PDs would be impressed by that at all? Thanks again for all the help.
  23. aProgDirector

    aProgDirector Pastafarians Unite! Moderator SDN Advisor

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    Many IM programs will interview a US grad with USMLE's > 200 and a satisfactory performance in an allopathic school.

    ERAS includes a section for research, which is separate from a section on publications / presentations. "Presentations" = at a peer reviewed, regional or national meeting. If you simply presented your research at your school, then you simply list it as a research experience.

    Some would argue about the relative ranking of the middle two. Program and field dependent.

    Depends on the program. Some are more research oriented. IN the end, most programs will be more interested in your clinical experience. Prior research (like an MS) is probably a small bonus.
  24. phisigman03

    phisigman03 Member

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    This was true a couple of years back. You might want to check and re check that statement. One particular hospital that I am at has foreign IMGs and only 1 US DO. Other hospitals that I've been to has US MDs and IMG MDs however, no US DOs.
  25. theunderdog

    theunderdog Medical Student (Slave)

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    thanks for all the replies everyone.
  26. bkpa2med

    bkpa2med

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    Was that not said clear enough? Don't forget that true FMGs will take any spot. DO's always have the option to match into any respective field in their own match, hence you'd see 1 DO vs ton of FMGs at some places. But once more, there are hospitals who prefer FMGs over US IMG and DO and vice versa.

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