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Transfer from DO - MD

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical Allopathic [ MD ]' started by LindsayRein1, May 8, 2008.

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  1. LindsayRein1

    LindsayRein1 : )

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    SDN Members don't see this ad. (About Ads)
    I thought this was fascinating...

    I met this guy this week (through a mutal friend, at his house) that is transferring from PCOM (DO) to George Washington School of Medicine in DC (MD) for his 3rd year of medical school. How interesting... I didn't even know it was possible to transfer from DO to MD. He assured me that it is quite possible and GW has accepted him. DO students can only apply to GW after their second year to transfer - because they have to take the USMLE.

    Just thought I would share : )

    Oh and I am 100% positive he was telling the truth, I saw his admission packet!
  2. dArroway

    dArroway Gettin' my hood on

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    LOL. GWU, get 'em boys!
  3. JaggerPlate

    JaggerPlate

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    Transferring is possible, but from what I can gather it is extremellly difficult to do.
  4. DrJD

    DrJD Junior Member

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    I've heard that in order to transfer from DO to MD there has to be an extenuating circumstance such as: You have just finished your second year of medical school and your spouse is transferred against their will to a new area where there are NO Osteopathic schools, then you would be a good candidate to try and transfer to an MD program...

    Just what i've heard...
  5. Depakote

    Depakote CA-2 Moderator Emeritus Lifetime Donor

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    This is roughly the case. Transfers among any medical schools are very rare and usually only granted in exceptional circumstances such as stated above or due to family illness, etc.
  6. LindsayRein1

    LindsayRein1 : )

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    Interestingly enough -- that wasn't the case for him. He said he had always wanted to go to MD school, and did not get in. During his summer before medical school and the summer after his first year he apparently did some really fantastic research at an allopathic school and applied to GW... and got in. He's now starting his third year, and clerkships, at GW! :)
  7. tiedyeddog

    tiedyeddog

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    Troll, my middle schooler brother did the same thing! He was attending Saint Luthers Middle School and decided he'd be better off at a more elite program so he switched to Harvard after taking the USLME. He scored a 180 but the harvard 'bros loved his cute dimples and chipmunk like voice so they ushered him in and gave him a full ride! Who knew?

    P.S. I smell a failure at starting a DO vs MD thread.
  8. LindsayRein1

    LindsayRein1 : )

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    Really? Your brother got into medical school in middle school? He must be brilliant.

    http://www.gwumc.edu/edu/admis/html/admissions/transfer.html

    This has nothing to do with MD vs DO - to me they are equivalent. I just thought it was fascinating that you CAN transfer from one to another, and I thought this was especially interesting because they have many different, but also similar, philosophies.

    And... be nice. This is just an internet message board. Relax and don't take this message board too seriously :)
  9. Perrotfish

    Perrotfish Has an MD in Horribleness

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    I don´t think your middle school bother could get into Harvard.

    Depending on who his Dad is, though, he might get into UF
  10. Wylde

    Wylde

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    honestly, it just goes to show how little difference there is in the basic medical education of DOs and MDs.

    MD schools might have more renowned faculty, better affiliated hospitals, more research, etc., but the underlying education remains very similar (from what I hear, I have no firsthand experience obviously).
  11. nonesuchgirl

    nonesuchgirl

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    *applause*
  12. doomknight

    doomknight Bing

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    it doesn't matter who his dad is. What really matters is who the dean and school presidente are
  13. Decicco

    Decicco

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    If you want to transfer to an US MD school, your best bet is to go to a Caribbean medical school rather than a US DO school (although it is unlikely either way). The med school at the school that I'm a ugrad at has a former C-MD that is in the top 10% of the class.

    In sum: most medical schools don't accept transfer applications from DO schools.
  14. tacrum43

    tacrum43 Behold the mighty echidna

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    I'm surprised GW accepted any transfers. Our class (going to be third years in t-minus 1.5 months) seems very full. In fact, they've had some problems accommodating every student for the rotations.
  15. bioteach

    bioteach MSIV

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    FIXED.


    (I do believe they are both types of medical schools.)
  16. Frank l

    Frank l

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    It is possible. The dean of the osteopathic school has to OK it though. At least that is how it is at might school. Usually they don't allow it unless you have some family situation/medical condition that requires you to be near the other school.
    It is kind of funny he is transferring after his first 2 years though. He must really want the M.D. after his name because clinical years are going to be about the same either place.
  17. Decicco

    Decicco

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    No, they aren't both medical schools. Take for example the link that was posted above. It says: "Applicants must submit three letters of recommendation. One must be from the Dean of the medical school OR osteopathic school at which the student is..."
    http://www.gwumc.edu/edu/admis/html/admissions/transfer.html

    "Allopathic" is a throw-away word. Most physicians reject it out right (read:"Allopathy artificially delimits the practice of medicine […]. It embodies an unnatural, inflexible philosophy of care and implies that our system of care is merely one of many from which a discerning health care consumer may choose. […] The practice of medicine deserves so much more than the parsimonious title allopathy." Gundling, Katherine E. (1998). "When did I become an "allopath"? (Commentary)". Archives of Internal Medicine 158: 2185-6.or "Frequently used terms such as scientific, regular, mainstream, conventional, organized, allopathic, or conservative fail to describe adequately what licensed physicians do in our society." Berkenwald, Alan D. (1998). "In the Name of Medicine". Annals of Internal Medicine 128: 246-50. ).

    It seems that osteopaths insist on drawing this distinction for reasons I'll let you decide.

    Thanks for the correction though!!
  18. paranoid_eyes

    paranoid_eyes

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    honestly DO=MD in every respect, so im not surprised that this is possible. I would probably screw the whole "focus on gpa and mcat for allo" if it werent for the fact taht my family would disown me if i became a DO.

    residency wise, don't fear going DO. i know several DO's who have landed interventional cardiology fellowships, and a couple who have gotten ophthalmology. just like for MD's it's all based on USMLE (which is based on how much you study)
  19. bioteach

    bioteach MSIV

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    Hopefully (if you ever get into medical school) you'll have a chance to tell your DO attending that they didn't really graduate from medical school. It'll be important to inform them of such an oversight.
  20. the donkey

    the donkey

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    so when this dude graduates from gwu, will he be a doctor of osteopathy or an MD...or will he be a hybrid?
  21. Pedsbro

    Pedsbro

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    I'd keep those short-sighted sentiments to yourself when you unwittingly disparage osteopathic medicine in front of the many DO students, residents, and attendings you will come across. DO=MD in every way and when the older, high-horse generation of MD's who believe otherwise finally retires in the next decade, we won't have these discussions anymore. I'm currently shadowing the head of pediatric neurosurgery at a WORLD famous children's hospital...guess what..he's a DO. A little trivia...the technical adviser for the first several seasons of "E.R." was a DO.
    DO's can and do get into every specialty and I've met several DOs who got into both allo and osteo schools, and chose osteo because they liked the philosophy better. They also did better on the USMLE (DO's can take that and/or COMLEX-their version) than many of their MD counterparts in residency. So maybe try shadowing or talking to current DO's and get some true insight. ;)
  22. LindsayRein1

    LindsayRein1 : )

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    Hi All

    I just wanted to remind everyone I didn't mean to start this thread to create an MD vs. DO argument, at all. I really just wanted to stick to and discuss the topic that you CAN indeed transfer from DO to MD school, and the reason why I brought it to attention was because I have previously read on this message board that it wasn't possible.

    I find it interesting that a competative school such as GW allows transfers, at all! (either MD or DO) Do people ever transfer or was this guy I met a rare case?
  23. Pedsbro

    Pedsbro

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    Transfers are rare to be requested, and even rarer to be granted in any case. But I would imagine DO to MD transfers are close to non-existent...I'd be curious to see how many times that's ever happened.
  24. LindsayRein1

    LindsayRein1 : )

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    Very interesting... I wonder too?
  25. Decicco

    Decicco

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    I agree with all of the above, MD=DO. All my post was concerning was terminology, and how I (and many MDs as well--some I've talked to don't even know what it means) don't like the word "allopathic." I think you may have read into my comments a little too much. Have a nice day!

    Remember, it was you who (erringly) corrected my use of words, not the other way around. I have the utmost respect for DO grads, thanks.
  26. Pedsbro

    Pedsbro

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    Somebody mentioned that they thought the DO dean had to sign off on the deal. That seems like a very unlikely request to be honored for fear of starting a bad trend...that is, rejected applicants from allo schools going to DO schools and then transferring to allo schools to get that MD after their name. Silly sentiment, but it exists and a DO dean would probably only do so under the most extreme circumstances. So if that's true, I can't imagine too many DO deans signing off on it. It'd be nice to get confirmation on that.
  27. surfstarj

    surfstarj

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    Doesn't it seem strange to have two different takes on training for professionals who will end up occupying, basically, the same positions? Why is there always a discrepancy between stats for the two types of schools?

    re the transfer, i'm thinking that the pre-clinical stuff is so similar that it's feasible to transfer. If it were easier to do I wonder if there would be a large number of transfers from DO-->MD and MD-->DO...people who changed their minds as to which type of training suits them best.
  28. tkim

    tkim D-d-d-dilaudid

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  29. LindsayRein1

    LindsayRein1 : )

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  30. vicinihil

    vicinihil Member Moderator Emeritus

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    Why are there two different names? Just wondering, I know DO schools were created to meet healthcare provider shortages and couldn't get the same licensing as MD (from AAMC?). MD schools take much longer to create.

    Also, they do provide the same quality of physicians right? Then why do DO schools take applicants with lower MCAT/GPA than MD schools. If in the end, the physicians are the same, then I guess GPA/MCAT are irrelevant to success as a doctor. Furthermore, DO schools would have better teachers since they are turning those that did less well in school and on standardized tests into equally capable physicians as those that entered MD programs with higher MCAT/GPA.
  31. Frank l

    Frank l

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    You are correct. I think most DO deans would not sign off on it unless you had a very compelling reason. And "wanting an MD" would not qualify. It is probably easier to get accepted to an MD school than it is to get the DO dean to approve the transfer. I do know someone who got accepted to an MD school after their first semester at a DO and was not approved for transfer by the dean.
  32. Frank l

    Frank l

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    DO schools were created because of what was originally an alternative philosophy of medicine. The philosophies are basically the same now. It is quite possible that some DO schools became DO schools because accreditation is easier, but I have no idea whether that is true. If it is, it would only apply to the newer schools, not schools like PCOM and Kirksville which have been around for 100 years.
  33. Ki45toryu

    Ki45toryu In this corner...

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    DO schools were created, initially, to remedy a dissatisfaction within parts of the medical community. That obviously isn't the case any longer, but I do not believe it is any easier to develop a DO program than it does an MD program. DO programs are going up quickly because of a demand for the profession. You will find many MD programs opening up very soon to meet that demand as well, for example the joint ASU/UA program that opened this year in Phoenix.

    Any med student will tell you that boards and rotations are better indicators of future physician quality than GPA and MCAT...and even those 2 factors don't give the full picture.
  34. Decicco

    Decicco

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    There is also the prospect of for-profit DO schools....
  35. J1515

    J1515 Member

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    Your post history seems to contradict this statement. Nice try bud.

    A small BTW: I've heard people call them osteopathic medical schools and osteopathic schools. Doesn't really matter, same thing. The AAMC refers to them as "osteopathic medical schools" on their website. Regardless, who ever argues for one or the other is a tool, regardless of which side they are on.
  36. JaggerPlate

    JaggerPlate

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    Umm, you have the utmost respect for them ... but they are osteopaths that didn't go to medical school? Nice cover there Doogie. I seriously love being a pre-med. Do you ever get tired of knowing everything?? Because I personally find it exhausting sometimes. Thanks for clearing up that 'Allopathic' thing as well. We wouldn't want morons making false assumptions based on terminology in this thread now would we??
  37. cyclohexanol

    cyclohexanol No, no. Doggie afuera.

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    One of my friends and classmates at COMP transferred to Tulane after 1st year. So yes, it happens... just like any other transfer.

  38. Frank l

    Frank l

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    Mmmm...yeah...I think that is retarded.
  39. J1515

    J1515 Member

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    I agree. I'm begining to think some pre-meds should just completely skip medical school and start practicing right after undergrad. All you really need is what your daddy told you (because of course he's a doctor) and what the several hundred doctors you shadowed told you. What else is there to know?
  40. Ki45toryu

    Ki45toryu In this corner...

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    Even residency should just go by the wayside...it's just extra years you aren't making 'real' money.
  41. notdeadyet

    notdeadyet Still in California Moderator

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    Assume with confidence that anywhere you start medical school is where you're going to graduate. People who transfer are a statistically anomally.

    Very, very few folks transfer between medical schools each year, in spite of lots of people wanting to. Folks say that you need a good reason (spouse, family illness, etc.), but that is secondary to the first qualifier: that a school is looking to fill a spot. That's a very rare thing.

    So it's not so much a DO thing as it is a transfer thing. It just doesn't happen often. Statistically, your odds of flunking out of medical school (which is very rare, btw) is much more likely than the odds of your transferring.

    If you don't like your options, please don't take them with the assumption that you can transfer. You'll just irritate yourself and those around you.
  42. nu2004

    nu2004

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    see, this is BS. you can't simultaneously say "MD and DO are the same in every way" and then tout "the DO philosophy." it's posturing done by internet idiots to sound authoritative.

    many of my best mentors are DOs and i consider them to be incredible doctors. if you believe in the DO philosophy, power to you... but then don't drop THE BIG EQUALIZER and try to make people who draw a distinction feel like hypocrites when that's what you do in the next breath.

    and as an aside to whoever was trying to claim otherwise - allopathic and osteopathic schools are both medical schools, where students learn about the SCIENCE of medicine. SCIENCE. it's not like they use chicken feet and leeches at osteopathic schools.
  43. Pedsbro

    Pedsbro

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    Where did I tout the DO philosophy? Hmm...try reading my post a little closer. And when I say MD=DO, i mean they have all the same knowledge and opportunities. You know what I'm talking about, but we all know you really have the problem with DOs, despite your forced compliments... :thumbdown: Calling me an idiot was a great touch, thanks...love you too
  44. LindsayRein1

    LindsayRein1 : )

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    I really, really, really, did not mean to start this thread to begin an MD vs. DO war. I just wanted to point out transfers during medical school - can we please stick to that topic.

    I am sorry if this thread started the same argument that everyone, including myself, is very sick of. I think it has been discussed to death!
  45. nu2004

    nu2004

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    in the same breath you called them equal and then tried to paint a difference. you're the one pandering to the MD v. DO sentiment. idiot.
  46. Pedsbro

    Pedsbro

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    :beat:
  47. nu2004

    nu2004

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    +pity+
  48. tkim

    tkim D-d-d-dilaudid

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    It's already been summed up quite nicely:

    http://cmsadmin.mercola.com/1999/archive/paradox_of_osteopathy.htm

    The Paradox Of Osteopathy

    The New England Journal of Medicine November 4, 1999;341:1426-1431, 1465-1467.

    In the spring of 1864, Andrew Taylor Still, a rural Kansas practitioner, watched helplessly as the best medications then available failed to save his three children from spinal meningitis. Bitterly disappointed, Still set out to devise an alternative healing practice. He eventually based his new system on the idea that manipulation of the spine could improve blood flow and thus improve health by allowing the body to heal itself. His philosophy included a healthy dose of moralism; patients were forbidden to consume any liquor and, as part of the break from existing practices, were also forbidden to take any medicine. Still founded a school to teach his new system of osteopathy in Kirksville, Missouri, in 1892.

    Osteopathy was not the only system of spinal manipulation to be created in the late 19th century. Chiropractic, established in 1895 by Daniel David Palmer, aimed to relieve obstruction in the nerves rather than in the blood vessels. Osteopathy and chiropractic initially shared several characteristics. Both were founded when Americans freely chose from many systems of healing. Both were homegrown American systems created at about the same time by messianic Midwesterners. Both systems were seen by many Midwesterners as preferable to the reductionist European model of laboratory-based medicine, which was established most firmly on the eastern seaboard and was fast becoming the standard.

    Over the course of the 20th century, medicine as practiced by M.D.'s (sometimes called allopathy) has come to dominate U.S. health care. Chiropractic and osteopathy, initially parts of a pluralistic medical system, have taken very different paths. Chiropractors have generally remained focused on spinal manipulation for a limited set of conditions, particularly those that are often resistant to allopathic therapy, such as back pain. Osteopaths, on the other hand, have worked hard to employ the entire therapeutic armamentarium of the modern physician, and in so doing they have moved closer to allopathy. )

    The move toward assimilation became explicit in California in the early 1960s, when the California Medical Association and the California Osteopathic Association merged in what has been called the osteopathic profession's darkest hour. By attending a short seminar and paying $65, a doctor of osteopathy (D.O.) could obtain an M.D. degree; 86 percent of the D.O.'s in the state (out of a total of about 2000) chose to do so. The College of Osteopathic Physicians and Surgeons became the University of California College of Medicine, Irvine. Many osteopaths feared that the California merger was the wave of the future and that the profession would not survive. But it did, and in so doing it may have become even stronger. D.O.'s are now licensed in all 50 states to prescribe drugs, deliver babies, and perform surgery -- in short, to do anything that M.D.'s can do. Despite national recognition, osteopathy is still a regional phenomenon in ways that mirror its historical origin. The ratio of D.O.'s to the population varies by a factor of almost 3, from a low of 7.7 per 100,000 population in the West to a high of 20.4 per 100,000 in the Midwest; the number is 8.5 per 100,000 in the South and 18.3 per 100,000 in the Northeast. M.D.'s are far more evenly distributed throughout the country.

    Osteopathy was originally created as a radical alternative to what was seen as a failing medical system. Its success at moving into the mainstream may have come at a cost -- the loss of identity. Most people -- including physicians -- know very little about the field (most people know more about chiropractic). Many people -- even osteopaths -- question what osteopathy has to offer that is distinctive.

    Those who claim that osteopathy remains a unique system usually base their argument on two tenets. One is the holistic or patient-centered approach, with a focus on preventive care that they say characterizes osteopathy. That claim to uniqueness is hard to defend in the light of the increasing interest paid to this approach within general internal medicine and other areas of allopathic medicine. The other, potentially more robust, claim to uniqueness is the use of osteopathic manipulation as part of the overall therapeutic approach. In osteopathic manipulation, the bones, muscles, and tendons are manipulated to promote blood flow through tissues and thus enhance the body's own healing powers. The technique, based on the idea of a myofascial continuity that links every part of the body with every other part, involves the "skillful and dexterous use of the hands" to treat what was once called the osteopathic lesion but is now referred to as somatic dysfunction. Osteopathic manipulation is not well known (or practiced) by allopathic physicians, but for decades it has stood as the core therapeutic method of osteopathic medicine.

    Some claim that osteopathic physicians are more parsimonious in their use of medical technology. Thus, they can provide more cost-effective medical care and reduce the need for medications, which, although effective, can have serious side effects. The specific mechanism that would account for any improvement in back pain directly related to osteopathic manipulation is unclear, but the most important studies will be those that test whether the technique works in clinical practice. Part of the success of osteopathic manipulation for patients with back pain may come from the fact that physicians who use osteopathic manipulation touch their patients.

    Osteopathic manual therapy is claimed to be useful for treating a wide range of conditions, from pancreatitis to Parkinson's disease, sinusitis, and asthma. Some leading osteopaths say that manual therapy should be part of almost every visit to an osteopathic physician. A recent president of the American Osteopathic Association claimed that he "almost always turned to [osteopathic manipulation] before considering any other modality," and he asserted that 90 percent of his patients got better with osteopathic manipulation alone. Such claims underscore a raging debate within osteopathy and a disconnection between its theories and its practice. A 1995 survey of 1055 osteopathic family physicians found that they used manual therapy only occasionally; only 6.2 percent used osteopathic manipulation for more than half of their patients, and almost a third used it for fewer than 5 percent. The more recent their graduation from medical school, the less likely practitioners were to use osteopathic manipulation, a finding consistent with the view that osteopathic practice is moving closer to allopathic practice. A decreasing interest in osteopathic manipulation may also indicate that more physicians enter osteopathic medical school not as a result of a deeply held belief in the osteopathic philosophy but after failing to be admitted to allopathic medical schools. The osteopathic physicians who are more committed to osteopathic manipulation tend to be more likely than their colleagues to have a fundamentalist religious orientation.

    With or without manipulation therapy, osteopathic medicine seems to be undergoing resurgence. Although the number of allopathic medical schools in the United States has remained stable since 1980, at about 125, the number of osteopathic medical schools has increased from 14 to 19. The number of graduates each year has increased at an even more disproportionate rate. The number of graduates of allopathic medical schools has increased only slightly, from 15,135 in 1980 to 15,923 in 1997, whereas the number of graduates of osteopathic medical schools has almost doubled, from 1059 to 2009, over the same period. Osteopathic medical schools have not done as well as allopathic medical schools in recruiting underrepresented minorities and women, and students entering osteopathic medical schools have somewhat lower grade-point averages and lower scores on the Medical College Admission Test. On the other hand, the ratio of applicants to those admitted is higher for osteopathic medical schools, 3.5 applicants for each person admitted, as compared with 2.4 for allopathic medical schools.

    Overall, osteopathic medical schools have come to resemble allopathic medical schools in most respects; some students even share classes. Graduates of osteopathic medical schools more often than not go on to residency training in allopathic programs. An evaluation of performance on the certifying examination of the American Board of Internal Medicine in the 1980s noted that although physicians from osteopathic medical schools did not do as well as those from allopathic programs, overall they "did well" and could be an "untapped reservoir of talented physicians" for internal medicine.

    Although they constitute only about 5 percent of U.S. physicians, osteopaths may be disproportionately important for the health care system by virtue of their distribution in terms of specialty and location: 60 percent of graduates of osteopathic medical schools select generalist fields. Because osteopathic education is more community-based than allopathic education, and because osteopathic schools are smaller, osteopathic education may be able to adapt more quickly to new approaches to health care delivery. Many more osteopaths than allopaths (18.1 percent vs. 11.5 percent) select rural areas in which to practice. One osteopathic medical school found that 20 percent of its graduates were practicing in underserved communities.

    At the end of the century, osteopathy continues its uneasy dance with allopathy, but only one partner is really paying attention. The resurgence in the numbers of osteopaths should not mask the precarious position of osteopathy. At its birth, osteopathy was a radical concept, rejecting much of what allopathic medicine claimed was new and useful. Today, osteopathic medicine has moved close to the mainstream -- close enough that in general it is no longer considered alternative medicine. The long-term survival of osteopathic medicine will depend on its ability to define itself as distinct from and yet still equivalent to allopathic medicine. That argument may best be articulated not in theoretical terms, but by demonstrating treatment outcomes. The paradox is this: if osteopathy has become the functional equivalent of allopathy, what is the justification for its continued existence? And if there is value in therapy that is uniquely osteopathic -- that is, based on osteopathic manipulation or other techniques -- why should its use be limited to osteopaths?

    Joel D. Howell, M.D., Ph.D. University of Michigan Ann Arbor, MI 48109-0604
  49. J1515

    J1515 Member

    Joined:
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    SDN 7+ Year Member
    Do you really think an MD/PhD knows more than a premed???? Don't forget, these premeds have shadowed several doctors.
  50. stockraider

    stockraider

    Joined:
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    Medical Student
    SDN 5+ Year Member
    I agree with this guy.....if DO= MD + some osteopathic training, and if the use of osteopathy is limited to osteopaths...why should MD's continue to be so maligned? I propose a $65 fee to have MD's take a seminar on osteopathy so they can convert their MD into a DO.....there's a bit of sarcasm in this statement, i'll give a gold star to anyone who can tell me what it is!

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