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Why MD, not DO?

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical Allopathic [ MD ]' started by thestrokes14, Jan 2, 2012.

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  1. thestrokes14

    thestrokes14

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    Just looking for some fresh opinions on the subject. I know it's an annoying question.

    I am personally interested in evidence based medicine, and I feel like there is more of a focus of that in allopathic medicine. Is that an unsound reason? Any help would be much appreciated.
  2. Mount Sinai

    Mount Sinai

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    There are a plethora of threads on this subject. please use the search button.
  3. thestrokes14

    thestrokes14

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    I actually did, and I wasn't finding it very helpful. Most threads talk about the subtle difference, but I am more curious about WHY you would choose MD.
  4. Mount Sinai

    Mount Sinai

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    I guess I'll start.

    1. there is the int'l significance. In other words, DOs are not often recognized internationally. I guess this is only really important if you want to practice outside the US.

    2. There is the tendency for MDs to match outside of primary care with greater leverage than most DOs. That does not mean however that DO specialists do not exist. i know several DO urologists actually.

    3. A lot of people still do not know what a DO is and resort to put Dr. X on their white coat in lieu of XXXX, DO. Keep in mind that I am not speaking generally, but from what I have seen in my area.
  5. drizzt3117

    drizzt3117 chick magnet

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    Not everyone is interested in chiropractic medicine... ;)
  6. thesauce

    thesauce Senior Member

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    I honestly had never heard of a DO when I applied.

    After hearing about it, I would have considered it if I hadn't been accepted to MD, especially since there is now a DO school in my hometown.
  7. Moebius

    Moebius

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    It depends on what you ultimately value and what your position academically. DO schools are newer and they are more forgiving academically, but I suspect this will change in the longer term especially since enrollment is skyrocketing and they are gaining more recognized.

    If you want to do academic medicine, you have to go to a good MD research school. (You can verify this by looking at departments and see where the faculty went to school) It is less common to see a DO holding a professorship doing research in a medical school.

    If you are ultimately aiming for PP, it won't matter as much. Matching will make a difference, but if you are on the bottom of the MD class with poor scores, you won't get into a good residency spot either.

    Part of it is the school that you can't change while part of it is how you do at the schools. Either way, good luck.
  8. NeuralNetwork

    NeuralNetwork Pass the BDNF

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  9. 235788

    235788 God Complex

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    very rare.

    In practice, MD and DO are typically the same (many DOs thinking manipulation is crap). I personally think there are more opportunities for MDs in the big picture. DO schools compete with the caribbean for many students so, make with that what you want. I was a little disappointed to find out that there is a for-profit DO school...
  10. xXIDaShizIXx

    xXIDaShizIXx Psy.D. Candidate

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    That's great lol.:D
  11. willen101383

    willen101383 Junior Member

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    Not rare bro. There are plenty of DO urologists especially in this area.

    http://urologicconsultsepa.com/handler.cfm?event=practice,template&cpid=17282

    For example.


    Either way, Dr Metro from that practice was one of our uro instructors. The dude MAKES penises from scratch in the event of a catastrophic trauma. Now that's whats up. Urology <3
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2012
  12. willen101383

    willen101383 Junior Member

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    My school has been around for 115 years. Change that to SOME DO schools are newer.
  13. willen101383

    willen101383 Junior Member

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    Says the premed...:rolleyes:

    You are a funny guy.
  14. willen101383

    willen101383 Junior Member

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    And now that I commented on some of the blatent misconceptions about osteopathic medicine I will post.

    I wouldnt go to a DO school again if I had to go through the process. I am at arguably the best DO and most well known DO school in the country, and there are still major "pains in the ass" that I have to deal with, and I can only imagine how it could be worse at some of the less well known schools.

    OMM is going to be a big pain in the ass for you if you dont enjoy it. I gave it a shot, realized I didnt like it, and yet I have still been forced to take the class for the last 2 years (pretending you care about it gets old after a while).

    Secondly, you WILL have a harder time matching into certain specialties regardless of what anyone tells you. This doesnt mean its impossible...just more difficult (alright rad onc is more or less impossible, but its more or less impossible for most MD students too).

    Thirdly, do you really want a malignant national organization being the organization that represents you? I know I dont...but am unfortunately stuck with em.

    My school is great, the teaching is great, but there are just a few things that really make it not worth it in my mind. But I would much rather be a DO than not a doc at all.
  15. tkim

    tkim D-d-d-dilaudid

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    MD's are not universally internationally recognized, either. Common premed misconception. Useless advantage unless you plan on relocating your practice.
  16. willen101383

    willen101383 Junior Member

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    Never seen this before. Sure I am sure there are plenty of DOs out there with inferiority complexes and do this kind of thing, but as a whole most DOs are going to put DO on their coat. Why are premeds so caught up on this? There have been countless threads on this and the whole "omg omg i saw a DO with MD on his hospital badge...followed by the "well hospital computer systems are only set up to put MD on physician badges and blah blah blah." Dont people have self esteem? Who cares what it says on your coat? You are a DOCTOR and thats all that matters.
  17. Mbeas

    Mbeas Hi I'm Kate

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    .





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  18. willen101383

    willen101383 Junior Member

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    And to answer your question because you seem like a nice enough guy/gal. (Although this is the opposite question).

    I graduated with a 2.45. I did a masters 2 years after graduation and graduated with a 3.78 in a rigorous science program I had 75ish credits in my masters. When you averaged that together it still came out to a 2.9. I would have gotten autoscreened from every MD program with that GPA...not to mention AMCAS wouldnt even alter my undergrad GPA with my grad GPA (while AACOMAS does). Could I have gotten into an MD program? Ill never know. I am a bit of a "pride snob" and if a school refused to recognize the fact that at the point I had applied I had something like 15,000 hours of clinical experience (worked full time in a licensed allied health field post graduation and during my masters), coupled with my massive GPA turnaround....I wouldnt want to go there anyway.

    My decision was a matter of not wanting to waste money/time trying to get into an MD program when the fields I was considering entering at that point would be amenable to DO grads.
  19. thestrokes14

    thestrokes14

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    Thanks for all the responses. I was curious if anyone could comment on my original idea: that evidence based medicine is a good reason to choose MD. I had the impression that DO focuses more on the holistic aspect of medicine: curing the person as a whole (mind and body) would help cure a more localized disease. Although specializing may be an advantage for MDs, I don't think I would use that as a reason for pursuing an MD degree, if asked at an interview.

    I think in the end, I am just going to say that I knew very little about osteopathic medicine before applying (which is true, hence this topic).
  20. willen101383

    willen101383 Junior Member

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    There is no difference EBM wise. MODERN DAY DOs focus on EBM just as much as modern MDs. Hell, Ive had a whole course on EBM forced down my throat all year long so far. There is really no difference in the way DOs practice vs MDs (as much as the AOA wants people to think there is).
  21. thestrokes14

    thestrokes14

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    That's good to know. Thanks.
  22. FrkyBgStok

    FrkyBgStok DMU c/o 2016

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    DOs claim the holistic side, but ultimately, if a DO doesn't use OMM, there is no difference in how MDs and DOs treat patients. It is a claim DO schools make, but in reality, it just doesn't work like that. You wouldn't notice a difference.

    Willen beat me to it.
  23. Cinclus

    Cinclus ...is a bird. Moderator

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    At MD schools, you're not going to get a "Why MD and not DO?" question; from your statements, I am under the impression that you think you may run into this question. Forgive me if I'm incorrect. You will likely be asked why you want to be a doctor, however.
  24. thestrokes14

    thestrokes14

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    I'm interviewing at Wright State (a primary care-focused school), and someone in that school specific thread mentioned that they were asked something about osteopathic medicine. So far, I have no been asked about DO, but I just want to be prepared.
  25. willen101383

    willen101383 Junior Member

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    I dont think the desire to specialize is a bad reason to say (if this came up). DO schools on the other hand ALWAYS ask "Why DO." @ My school I actually did say "because I had an extreme grade turnaround and DO schools would be more likely to recognize me as a changed person vs MDs." Honest and to the point....and it worked.
  26. aslan

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    I second the things said on here, but want to add mtc. I only applied to DO programs (and got accepted to a few- go class of 2016!!!) for two reasons: 1- I want to learn OMM, I have an old snowboarding injury and my only exposure to OMM is when a MS3 I know tweaked on my ankle and I walked up stairs without pain for the first time in 5 years- that was nice. 2- I bought the whole "treat the whole patient" crap that gets sold around where people talk about why DO's are cool. The first reason is legit and while I won't use all I learn in OMM classes, I will use the stuff that makes sense to me and helps make life better (which is the point of medicine anyway right?), the second reason is bupkis. People don't go into medicine because they hate people- the word "holistic" is basically used to make DO schools sound more caring than their MD counterparts which I really doubt is the case. So if you're not interested in OMM and you think you want to specialize, there is no reason at all to choose DO over MD. Especially since MD schools do a better job of getting their students clinical rotations- which I'm learning is more important than the actual school itself. So now I'm wishing I had also applied to MD schools, but c'est la vie- someday I will be a doctor and the only people who will actually care about what letters are after my name will be the occasional hater on SDN. So wherever you go to med school make sure they have good clinical rotation sites! And remember that you will be a doctor!
  27. SellerAl

    SellerAl

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    most people only do DO out of necessity, so even if its wrong, they're looked down upon slightly
  28. LifeTake2

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    Only by arrogant pre-meds :)

    The rest of the country still calls them Doctor!
  29. SellerAl

    SellerAl

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    First statement, ehhh, second statement, true.
  30. Athina

    Athina

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    Your country does (USA). The rest of the world, not so much. And, if I went to a hospital in the US, and I was given a DO, I'd ask for an MD.
  31. willen101383

    willen101383 Junior Member

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    Again, another premed making statements on the reality of DO practice in this country. You dont know what the reality is, so dont make statements like you do.

    Doctors are judged by the quality of their work, and by their patient outcomes. Sure, docs out there might look down upon DOs for being DOs. There are also doctors out there that might look down upon a colleague because they are black, or jewish, or hispanic, or whatever.

    People need to stop concerning themselves with the possibility that someone might look down upon you because of something superficial like a degree. Again, high self esteem goes a long way in life....worry about yourself and the quality of your work, and not what others think of your based on superficial traits.
  32. willen101383

    willen101383 Junior Member

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    And chances are, they would laugh at you.

    Time to grow up. The world doesnt revolve around you.

    Furthermore DOs in the US are not the same as DOs around the world. DO training and MD training in this country are the same. In other countries they are not. DOs are glorified chiropractors in other countries, in the US they are physicians.
  33. SellerAl

    SellerAl

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    I agree with you, right or wrong, they are discriminated against from the starting line because they didn't go MD. I'm not trying to argue what you think I'm trying to argue, I agree with you.
  34. Athina

    Athina

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    I don't think anybody would laugh at me. As a patient, you have a choice. Unless you're unconscious, you can decide if you want someone as your doctor.

    DOs may be glorified chiropractors in the rest of the world but seems to me that they are second-rate MDs in the States so why settle?
  35. EnergyDrink

    EnergyDrink

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    DO programs generally have lower GPA/MCAT standards than MD programs. So people who actually invested time in people rather than grades and pointless checklist ECs during undergraduate education tend to suffer in MD selection criteria.
    :love:
  36. willen101383

    willen101383 Junior Member

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    Sure, in some places. In many places this isnt the case. Premeds like to think everyone is destined for the ivory tower of medicine...but the reality is most grads are going to end up in the trenches at some community hospital, where docs are judged by the quality of their work and patient outcomes. Either way, if people want to think negatively of me based on my degree, thats completely idiotic, and totally fine with me. For every patient or doc that judges me for it, plenty more will respect me as a physician for, (again) the quality of my work and outcomes.
  37. willen101383

    willen101383 Junior Member

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    Yeah thats simply not true. You havent even started medical school yet, and thus know nothing of the reality of the situation. Your opinion is thus meaningless. Furthermore, you are Canadian, which further distances you from reality of medical practice in the United States.

    So what are you going to to at 2am when you come into the ER with a blown aneurysm/ruptured appendix spilling **** into your abdomen/insert medical emergency here; and the only doc available to treat you is (gasp) a DO???

    Bet your opinions of the doc who proceeds to save your life will change a bet, EH?

    Also, you should probably change your status from "medical student" to "premed" so that you arent advertising yourself as something you are not.
  38. romanjetfighter

    romanjetfighter

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    for people wanting to be PCPs, don't some MD schools have cool programs and like loan repayment or something like that?
  39. Moebius

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    When you are an attending (MD or DO), all the residents and fellows (MDs) will look up to you.

    If you are not looking to get NIH grants or any other grants, it doesn't really matter that much where you went to school. There are people who are going to the best schools with 35+ mcat median, but they plan to run their own clinic or take it over from a family member.

    It is ultimately what kind of life you really want. When you are bleeding or have a serious problems, no one really cares if it is a DO or MD. Honestly, almost everyone goes to internal medicine anyways. Unless, you are aiming for something specific or a specific program, it doesn't matter that much.
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2012
  40. SellerAl

    SellerAl

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    This is true for not only the sensible people you will meet, but the people that actually matter in your life. However, again, theres a massive population that this isn't the case
  41. johnisles2011

    johnisles2011

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    Whether or not it's a good thing or there's any basis for it, MD is more accepted and prestigious and gives you significant early career advantages over DO counterparts (just look at match statistics). Also, I have heard that many DO schools are willing to accept applicants they know cannot complete the work in order to fill out a class and for the money. That's unethical. I also don't like the idea of my friends and colleagues not making it through.

    I also think going DO has a tendency to pigeon hole people into certain specialties, if only because others (like surgicals) have a strong tendency to reject DOs for residency.
  42. willen101383

    willen101383 Junior Member

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    Wow, the misinformation in this thread is HILARIOUS. You are thinking of the carribbean my friend. The DO and MD attrition rate is the same +/- maybe a percent or two. I thought this was well known, I guess not. My school (PCOM Philly) had 7500 applicants last year for roughly 275 spots in the M1 class. Do you actually think they need to take subpar applicants to fill classes? Furthermore I am one major class shy of finishing my preclinical coursework, and I think we have lost ONE student so far.




    Here is some info for you to look at: http://www.aacom.org/data/Documents/2011-COM-Attrition-Summary.pdf

    Looks like the DO attrition rate hovers around 2.5% consistently over the timeperiod they looked at. That includes students who took leaves of absence. The students who were dismissed/dropped out =around 1.3% so figure for my class size I will lose 3 maybe 4 students/275 over the course of the 4 years

    Lets not forget osteopathic medical schools have their own residency training programs, so you arent "pigeonholed" into anything. Sure you may have a difficult time matching into certain allo specialties, but in almost all cases there are AOA residency spots available.

    Any other misinformation people want to post for me to comment on?
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2012
  43. Starlightembers

    Starlightembers

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    Research and academics. Not only do MD schools tend to have more research in the first place -- thus allowing you to gain exposure/engage in it, find mentors, etc -- your chances of landing a well-regarded, research-heavy residency program are greatly increased as an MD. That, and I plan on applying MD/PhD: not only are there fewer DO/PhD programs, (a) none of them are funded programs, (b) none, that I have found, are in my field, (c) as mentioned above, you will still have less opportunities.

    DOs can still do academics; however, it will be harder for them than an MD.

    No, not really.

    Is it rare for a DO to get an allopathic Urology residency? Yes; however, as there are DO residency programs, this does not equate to it being "very rare" for a DO to be in a certain specialty.
  44. willen101383

    willen101383 Junior Member

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    Here is the MD attrition rate:

    https://www.aamc.org/download/102346/data/aibvol7no2.pdf

    Looks like (albeit a tiny bit dated) the attrition rate is around 0.8%

    Do you see a significant difference between 0.8% and 1.3% to support your statement that "I heard DO schools take students they know wont make it so that they can fill class sizes and blah blah blah...that is unethical?" I sure dont.

    Lets check facts before we post wrong information on forums.
  45. Moebius

    Moebius

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    The only downside to DO is having a difficult getting into the most competitive residency slots and fellowships, but the same problem exists for MD graduates. I am pretty sure you will end up somewhere nice especially since the barriers are gradually breaking down.

    The best advantage of MD school is having a good mentor leading you into research, but if research doesn't matter and you don't mind not being accepted into the top residency/fellowships, it doesn't matter. All the programs publish their residents/fellows and a lot of programs have DOs. It's rarer in the top schools, but they exist.
    Last edited: Jan 2, 2012
  46. Bacchus

    Bacchus PGY-Uh Oh Moderator

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    The fact of the matter is, once you start practicing you will be earning a paycheck. If people don't like that you're an osteopathic physician, they can leave your practice. You won't need to look far to find a new patient to take their spot. You will always be paid. You won't have to worry about not making a salary because you went to a college of osteopathic medicine.

    There's no point to argue about international practice rights because all aid organizations such as Doctors without Borders allow participation of ALL US-trained physicians. And, be honest, how many people are truly going to practice in another country? Borders are closed to physicians in various countries if those people weren't trained there.

    Will I match an allopathic urology spot as a DO? No, I won't. But neither will the majority of US allopathic students. These fields are selective due to competition. Degree is secondary. DOs can apply to their own residencies (since most exist in both worlds).

    There is a lot of misinformation on this forum. Everyone thinks they are going to be God's gift to medicine. Guess what? No, you probably won't be. You'll go about your day, working under an organization such as a hospital, and earn the paycheck you deserve. I've never see an attending degrade another based on their degree.

    This country needs physicians. You will have a job. Screw the people that think the letters DO make you less-qualified.
  47. willen101383

    willen101383 Junior Member

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    DO schools have similar programs. Loan repayment programs arent generally run by schools and are something that happen after you leave residency, usually involving you living in a disadvantaged area for X time period.
  48. johnisles2011

    johnisles2011

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    Ah, apologies for my misinformed statement on the attrition rate. As I said, though, that's just what I have heard.

    Look here though. 95% us md matched PGY-1, to ~70% DO. http://www.nrmp.org/data/resultsanddata2011.pdf
    That is what I was referring to for the match data.
  49. willen101383

    willen101383 Junior Member

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    Again, this doesnt account for DO students leaving the MD match for the DO match.

    If you enter BOTH matches (the DO match occurs first), and you match DO you are automatically withdrawn from the MD match.

    Trust me, there arent 30% of all graduating DOs walking around matchless each year.

    Sorry for calling you out, (and I am by no means a huge DO route supporter), but it is important that people check their facts. Of all the misconceptions out there involving DOs most are not true, and are just things premeds continue to pass down because of "i read somewhere" or "i heard from someone," without checking the facts.
  50. willen101383

    willen101383 Junior Member

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