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oral boards

Discussion in 'Young Ophthalmologists' started by pedseye, 05.31.06.

  1. pedseye

    pedseye Junior Member

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    Ok I was wondering if anyone had any adivice for the oral boards. I am taking them in october. When should i start studying? What should i study?What courses should i take. thanks
     
  2. Andrew_Doan

    Andrew_Doan Doc, Author, Entrepreneur Moderator Emeritus Lifetime Donor

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    I am taking them too. The YO committee members have advised me:

    1) Dress in a suit;
    2) Be familiar with photos;
    3) If you don't know a case, then say so and move on. People have failed because they spent all their time on one case. It's better to miss a case and get several more right.
    4) Ask for clinical data.

    People who have taken the oral boards, please give us advice!

    Any advice from previous test takers will be helpful.
     
  3. shiro1

    shiro1 Member

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    I took orals and passed it a few years ago. I went to the Osler Board review course because you can do mock oral exams, either privately (more $$) or in a group session in front of anyone who wants to watch. It is scheduled so you take it shortly before the boards. I found it helpful due to my fear of performing in public. Study on your own before this though, this is mainly for brushing up your delivery and getting tips on making it through the day. Frankly, the best advice I can give you is don't sweat it. Most people pass, it isn't as rough as the writtens. If you finish before your alloted time with each person, you're probably doing pretty well. Main thing is, they're just trying to see if you are reasonably competant and won't kill or unecessarily blind the patient. :D
     
  4. pedseye

    pedseye Junior Member

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    what books do i need to read for orals?
     
  5. NR117

    NR117 Member

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    To Shiro1 or anyone else who's done the Orals:

    Does one have to know pathology for the orals? (Sorry Andrew but it's soo not related to what I do on a day-to-day basis! Of course it's different when you're doing research).
    Also, were the optics questions more clinically oriented, or were there weird fishtank type of stuff or optics of instruments?
    How about refractive surgery? Seeing as the average ophthalmologist gets very little exposure to that during residency, how well do they expect you to know these topics?

    Can you tell that the pressure's getting to me, with less than a week to go now? :oops:
     
  6. shiro1

    shiro1 Member

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    If you have studied and passed the written, you should NOT worry about the orals. The information that you need is already in your brain, and utilized every day that you see patients. The questions are generally clinically oriented and do NOT go into nitpicky details. Some examples of questions include the treatment of a corneal ulcer, dealing with the unhappy glasses patient (and a picture of a gentleman wearing executive style bifocals) and asking how I would deal with parents of young child with a large retinoblastoma whom three other ophthalmologists stated that immediate enucleation is the ONLY mode of treatment still refused after you agreed with their assesment. It was clear that they only wanted to hear that you would proceed through either legal means or searching out ethical consultation and not allow the parents to go on with their foolhardy decision. They love touchy feeling questions! I also heard a friend had to answer a question about anisocoria and after ruling out Adies and Atropine forgot about CNIII palsy! She still passed, though. I think they take into consideration people's nerves and if you do well enough in most areas and don't really foul up a particular area, you can pass readily. Anyway, there were some pictures of fluoresceins and external pictures to look at, but no pathology. Appropriate work-up, differential diagnosis, treatment, etc. should be what you should concentrate on. A good reference atlas is probably all you need to study. I think that I used Chern's Ophthalmology Review Manual for that.
    Good luck! :luck:
     
  7. NR117

    NR117 Member

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    Thank you very much, Shiro1, that really helps!
     
  8. Andrew_Doan

    Andrew_Doan Doc, Author, Entrepreneur Moderator Emeritus Lifetime Donor

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    Great advice! Thanks!
     
  9. ckyuen

    ckyuen Senior Member

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    My colleague surveyed former residents from our program last weekend and all but one said the osler course was worth it. Not sure if I'm going to take it or not. A week away from practice cost a lot of revenue, but not passing waste a lot of time.
     
  10. Olddog1

    Olddog1 Junior Member

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    I passed the orals last year. Definitely not as bad as I thought. Look at picture, pictures, pictures. For retina I loved Clinical Retina (Quillen). I looked through the Pro Vision series, and read through the Wills Review stuff. There was a book called clinical pearls (author Gault??) which showed a picture of something and then gave a brief dx and mgmt. There is a newer one out from the Wills docs, with cases, which I heard is good, but I don't know the name. More importantly know the DDx, I think that was asked for almost everything. Everybody said know Last Minute Optics esp.. the last chapter. I can't even remember my optics questions, but I know there was nothing from the last chapter. Get through as many questions as you can, but be thorough in the ones you answer, pass if completely stumped and go back. Don't wast time with "this it a color photography of the right optic nerve, there is a clear media, blah blah blah", you are only wasting time. This is a glaucomatous appearing optic nerve I would do X, Y, Z, next question. Good luck.
     
  11. EyeFormation

    EyeFormation Junior Member

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    I just passed my orals this June. I second the previous poster in that I used CLinical Retina by Quillen and Blodi to look at Retina. It had good pictures, a brief section of written information for each entity, and it seemed to have the things that would be expected on the boards. I also just looked at Wills and tried to look at a chapter title and go through the presenting signs, DDx, exam, tests, treatment. I did not do an Osler course. It was interesting to me to see the difference in examiners. Some just looked at you as you talked and gave no indication whatsoever whether you were answering correctly or just hanging yourself. Others prompted you more for specific bits of information. The differential is key. I think that I was asked that on every question. Remember, don't kill the patient (i.e., an esotropia could be the presenting sign of a retinoblastoma). If you don't know, simply move on. I went back to one question after I answered another question after something popped in my head. It really is the quickest 3 hours in your life. If anyone has any specific questions (short of what was on it :) ), I would be happy to answer.
     
  12. Olddog1

    Olddog1 Junior Member

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    I forgot my favorite. Ophthalmolgy Review by Kuldev Singh, Smiddy and Andrew Lee. These are case presentations. Gives you the case, differential, test, diagnosis, medical and surgical mgtm. It is exactly what I think the orals are about. Think of a Ddx, narrow it down, give conservative mgmt first followed by surgical. The cases aren't that hard, and you can blaze through the book pretty quick (99 cases, 380 pages, with alot of pics) , but I thought it really helped.
     
  13. ckyuen

    ckyuen Senior Member

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    any last minute recommendations from anyone for the boards coming in a week and a half, that earthquake we had here put a cramp in my studying
     
  14. Andrew_Doan

    Andrew_Doan Doc, Author, Entrepreneur Moderator Emeritus Lifetime Donor

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  15. orbitsurgMD

    orbitsurgMD Senior Member

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    The orals are about seeing how well you can assess a situation with limited information--usually a photo and a short (one sentence) history attached.
    So your replies should be a short presentation in the form of "if it is this, then I would do the following . . . ". Some items aren't so clear--a photo of a green-brown blob, out of focus, possibly a SRNVM sticks in my mind still--and in those cases a forensic approach beginning with " I believe this to be a retinal photograph showing . . ." and so forth. They want to see a logical and reasonable clinical approach. If the examiner is satisfied with your process, they tend to usher you along to another test item. That is a good sign.

    Expect to see the problems that are in the "you must not ever forget" class--pediatric leukocoria is guaranteed, for instance. Basic refractive questions are certainties also. Neuro disorders are perennial favorites.
    Know what a keratoacanthoma looks like and be able to say what you would do with it. There might be a nine-panel or two showing a dysmotility.
    Be prepared to sort out the diagnosis and propose a teatment plan.

    Most people pass, despite the anxieties.

    Then you can start your MOC.
     
  16. Wolverine98

    Wolverine98

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    One of our staff who took the Osler course said that everything she got on the real test was covered there, either for herself or in watching other people go through it.

    Dave
     
  17. ckyuen

    ckyuen Senior Member

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    Finally board certified, including travel expenses and a review course about 5 grand and a piece of paper so I can accept vsp insurance. seems very anti-climatic
     
  18. Andrew_Doan

    Andrew_Doan Doc, Author, Entrepreneur Moderator Emeritus Lifetime Donor

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    Good job Ckyuen!
     
  19. orbitsurgMD

    orbitsurgMD Senior Member

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    Congratulations. VSP, $60 for the blue-plate special, refraction included. Enjoy. You need to sell a lot of glasses to make those plans worthwhile. The countdown has now started for your recertification, less than ten years to go.
    At $60, you will have to see 25 VSP patients to pay for the MOC plus whatever you would have to pay to get the 300 minimum hours of Cat 1 CME.

    Bang for buck, the best review course is the Army's Ophthalmology Review Course given once a year in San Antonio, still a bargain at $200 for civilians, $100 military. It is well-organized and you even get 40 hours of CME.
     
  20. ryangeraets

    ryangeraets Junior Member

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    I'd echo the above post regarding the San Antonio course in March. It is VERY well done. It is an exceedingly dense week of lecture that is actually valuable clinically, and again, at $200 you will be hard pressed to find a better deal.
     
  21. ckyuen

    ckyuen Senior Member

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    Been to the course three times, agree it's rigorous but worth it.
     
  22. Baylor_eye

    Baylor_eye Junior Member

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    Does anyone have an opinion about the San Antonio course versus the Wills Course? Is either one more boards driven versus being more OKAP directed?
     
  23. ckyuen

    ckyuen Senior Member

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    I thought san antonio was great for okap and boards. not really geared for oral boards. didn't go to wills. one of my friends went to wills one year and then san antonio the following three or four years, he liked san antonio better obviously.
     
  24. dmdmd003

    dmdmd003

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    Hi,
    I'm taking the orals this october...I did pretty well on writtens, but just had twin baby girls in August, and no time to study for orals:scared:. I'm going to take osler, but should I take their "written" course plus some extra oral sessions, or just the oral course?
    thanks
     
  25. eyesrgn

    eyesrgn

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    For people who have passed the oral boards, do you think the Osler course is worth both the time away from practice and the cost of the course?
     
  26. Andrew_Doan

    Andrew_Doan Doc, Author, Entrepreneur Moderator Emeritus Lifetime Donor

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    Osler is over kill. You can prepare with just the Osler CD-ROMs.

    Good luck!
     
  27. orbitsurgMD

    orbitsurgMD Senior Member

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    A second prep course in really unnecessary. Use atlases for review. Orals are all about pictures, so look at lots of those.
     
  28. dmdmd003

    dmdmd003

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    Osler was definitely worth it. I would not have passed without the course!
     
  29. eyesrgn

    eyesrgn

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    I took the advice from Andrew and saved myself some money and more importantly time by not taking Osler. I thought the oral boards were very fair. I do appreciate the advice from Andrew and other SDN members because it saved me some time! It is awfully hard to leave your practice sometimes.
     

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