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2017 Anesthesiology Oral Boards thread

Discussion in 'Anesthesiology' started by MDanesthesia, Mar 7, 2017.

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  1. MDanesthesia

    MDanesthesia

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    Mar 7, 2017
    OFFICIAL 2017 ANESTHESIOLOGY ORAL BOARDS THREAD

    Hello people

    Took my exam this week and gotta say went from feeling pretty good to bad over the course of the day/night. I know there are other threads on this but all are at least 2-3 years old.

    How did you guys feel? Remember not to give specifics since its illegal to discuss explicit contents of the exam.

    First stem for me was OK. Examiners really let me talk a lot but we got through everything. A little shaky, now thinking back I definitely didn't get a lot of the hints they were giving me and didn't really think about the underlying diagnosis well.

    Second stem felt MUCH MUCH better. Felt like I killed it but obviously now I look back and wonder why would say certain things. Lots of "I cant recall"

    When do scores come out? They said "WITHIN 2 weeks from the last day of the test week" but I've heard they can come out much sooner.

    I studied using UBP and think that is really the GOLD standard. If I fail, it won't be because I wasn't prepared but because I just had mental lapses especially in first stem.
     
    Last edited: Mar 9, 2017
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  3. Ezekiel2517

    Ezekiel2517 Anesthesiologist 10+ Year Member

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    Relax bro, it's over. You survived the wild boars. Just thank god you're alive
     
  4. MDanesthesia

    MDanesthesia

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    That's the thing, they weren't boars. They were all very nice.
     
  5. kidthor

    kidthor meep 10+ Year Member

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    Do you have any tips you'd give to those who'll take in the coming weeks? Anything you'd do differently study-wise?
     
  6. MDanesthesia

    MDanesthesia

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    Yes. Don't worry about the small detail things you may not necessarily know well. The last week I was obsessed with getting minutia down. Instead I wish I just thought more broadly and did more practice exams. You will be guaranteed to get difficult airway, hypotension, desaturation, nerve injury, some sort of brachial plexus block, neuraxial question. Master those and please, THINK OF THE PATIENTS UNDERLYING DIAGNOSIS.

    If a patient has disease X and coming in for a simple lap appy. Think about disease X when answer every question. If they ask if this patient needs oxygen (obviously does) - think, WHY is he asking me this...is there something about disease X that oxygen affects.

    I know I was whining earlier but honestly, IT WAS NOT THAT BAD. I had built it up as this IMPOSSIBLE exam but really the questions are pretty direct and my examiners were very nice and helpful. Staying calm is key.
     
  7. kidthor

    kidthor meep 10+ Year Member

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    Any more tips?
     
  8. GravelRider

    GravelRider SDN Lifetime Donor Lifetime Donor Gold Donor Classifieds Approved 2+ Year Member

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    I thought this was a thread about the deliciousness of Boars Head bologna.
     
  9. MDanesthesia

    MDanesthesia

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    Just do UBP over and over. Don't need any more sources from there and stay calm. Practice a lot too. I know I don't know if I passed yet but if I have to retake it I could literally take it again next week and probably pass it because I'd be more calm having done it once already. I would say 95% of the exam was directly out of UBP.

    I know one of the grab bags I bombed was DIRECTLY out of UBP. Like the same stem and questioning - of course I remembered it in the airport on the way back home :(
     
    Swamp Gas likes this.
  10. Dr Stu

    Dr Stu Trimmer/Mower 10+ Year Member

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    UBP all the way. There were no surprises on exam day, UBP covers the topics well. UBP questions and answers are much more detailed and lengthy then the actual exam. But it leads to over preparation which is the best strategy.
     
    Swamp Gas likes this.
  11. zoobymed

    zoobymed 10+ Year Member

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    Man I haven't posted to this board in years. I just found out I passed on my first attempt. I read UBP once (mostly crammed at the end) and practiced with my co residents 1-2 times a week for 3 months. The examiners were not aggressive and even threw me a few bones, much nicer than the faculty I practiced with at my institution.

    Just read UBP, do some old practice exams with colleagues and do your best to stay calm
     
  12. vector2

    vector2 ASA Member 10+ Year Member

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    Had a really rough first room, examiners questioned every decision, kept interrupting, asking minutiae etc. Second room was cake, easy q's, very friendly, and they coaxed all the answers they needed out of me. Now the wait begins.

    UBP is definitely the way to go, but I can't state strongly enough that practicing as much as possible is key. And not just any practice where someone is just reading questions to you, but practice with senior colleagues or board examiner attendings who will throw you off your game, question your every decision, interrupt, and put you into situations where you never would've proceeded IRL. You could have all 6 UBP books memorized but if you get thrown off your game by a difficult examiner your knowledge just goes right out the window in the heat of the moment. Stay cool, plan for contingencies when outlining your stem, and don't do anything you wouldn't do in a real case.
     
  13. Scotty_G

    Scotty_G Junior Member 10+ Year Member

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    Basically if you feel good about one room and so-so on the other you still passed unless you did some boneheaded stuff :0
     
    inquisitiveanes likes this.
  14. vector2

    vector2 ASA Member 10+ Year Member

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    I've heard from some ppl that they got their results exactly two weeks after their exam date, not necessarily on the Friday of their expected result week. Anyone confirm/deny?
     
  15. ra233

    ra233 10+ Year Member

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    Test results come back to you the Monday, the second week or so after your exam.

    For me, it was a horrible day. I found out I failed. I couldn't totally believe it. I even submitted a rescore request, which was useless. My results letter came back with only the word "poor" written in the four different categories. I felt like I was ready. I read through the Sapola book two months leading up the exam. I had done a number of mock oral exams with previous examiners who work in my practice (I finished residency last July and took a private practice job) who said I should be fine. In hindsight, maybe they were trying to help boost my confidence so I would do a little better. As far as the actual exam, I felt great during the first session, but I became anxious during the second session. I felt horrible after the second session and prayed for the next two weeks that I would pass. Now, I am not sure what to do. It sounds like UPB is highly recommended? Or should I do a live course?

    Thanks,
    Ryan
     
  16. G-Man82

    G-Man82 10+ Year Member

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    I ended up going for the live UBP course. It's worth it.


    Sent from my iPhone using SDN mobile
     
  17. vector2

    vector2 ASA Member 10+ Year Member

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    Really sorry to the hear that, man. Those two weeks of self-doubt waiting to get results are horrible and I can't imagine what you're going through currently. I will say though, I bought the sapola and rapid review books and they were trash compared to the UBP books or reading a large amount of yao or faust. Can you provide any more detail on why the second room went so bad?

    I would say do the live course, and find some examiners either online or in person who will destroy you and build you up again...practicing with ppl who just let you coast on mumbling, rambling, or poorly thought-out bad answers isn't helpful at all.
     
  18. GassmanMD

    GassmanMD ASA Member 5+ Year Member

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    I am sorry to hear you did not pass. I bet it feels like it is the end of the world, but it's not. Personally, I did UBP (not the course, just the 6 booklets) based on recommendations from many people on this forum, and I think it is currently the gold standard for studying for the oral board. But you can not simply read the texts, you have to practice delivering the lines. You have to speak. Speak to a colleague, a spouse, a wall. Doesn't matter. I mainly practiced going through the UBP stems with my spouse who is medical but not an anesthesiologist, but it was still helpful. When she wasn't around, I would talk out loud to myself. Then closer to the test I did several stems with a former resident who was good about grilling me and going deeper into the reasoning behind my plans.

    I hope this helps. I know its going to be a tough year, but don't give up hope. Focus on what went wrong and fix it for the next round.
     
  19. ra233

    ra233 10+ Year Member

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    I appreciate all the responses. I don't want to make the thread turn into a doomsday thing for those still studying for the boards. When I got my fail notice, I felt like crawling under a rock. Thankfully, the world does not stop spinning. The day I found out my results, I had a difficult neuro surgery line up where I had to focus on the patient and not wallow in self pity.

    Orals are tough, obviously, but they are not unmanageable. After my exam, I did a lot of self critique and found some definite problems. First of all, I recognize that I became very nervous during the exam and began to doubt myself. I should have stayed calm and confident. I did get a few things wrong, but if I would have been confident about my plan and had a solid basis for my judgement, I would have been much better off. I could have studied a little harder, but hindsight is 20/20. The second question stem was based on something I hadn't studied very well. No, it wasn't Peds, cardiac or OB. I know now not to take the exam for granted! I will do a formal study course for sure. In the meantime, I have some reading I can do.

    Thanks again.
     
  20. Methohexital26

    Methohexital26

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    I just took my oral boards and feel like crap! :( The exam was fair, the examiners reasonable but for some reason I had a few questions where I gave the darnest answers and it's killing me inside.

    I was able to get through all 3 grab bags in both sessions. Does that mean anything?! Do those who fail manage to get through the grab bags? I guess I'm looking for hope. It will be an awful wait.
     
  21. teeva

    teeva 2+ Year Member

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    I passed on my first time a few years ago. All I did was read all the UBP books and ABA materials I could find starting 3 weeks before the exam and practiced with a few friends every day or other day for a total of about 20 hours. I tried reading Ho or Jensen but didn't like them. I don't know if it helped, but I treated the UBP books like a movie/tv script that I was supposed to memorize and recite when certain cases, scenarios, key words, and emergencies arose in the actual exam. I also tried best to answer with how I would do things in the real world and be able to justify it. I also spent a lot of time studying and memorizing ACLS, BLS, PALS, neonatal, etc. I heard too many stories of people failing because they may have answer code questions incorrectly. I was asked dosing and administration route questions for one code scenario.

    I completely finished the first session with little time to spare, if I remember correctly they said that is all and I just sat there staring at the wall. Got to all grab bag questions in the second session too but didn't finish completely. I also said I'd have to look it up twice, and once said "I don't know, please move on" after repeatedly being asked the same question I had no clue on.
     
    Last edited: May 18, 2017
    Methohexital26 likes this.
  22. timgasman

    timgasman

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    I didn't like UBP much. I was more of a justoralboards.com guy and found that to be way to go
     
  23. jakcat

    jakcat 7+ Year Member

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    Anyone taking the exam June 6th?? I'm trying to pull it together this last week and review as much as possible!! I admit I'm losing sleep over this darn test
     
  24. Methohexital26

    Methohexital26

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    I failed the Orals..hope for better luck next time!
     
    sevoman777 likes this.
  25. WholeLottaGame7

    WholeLottaGame7 10+ Year Member

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    Right here.
    I just love that the thread title is still Oral Boars...
     
  26. Arch Guillotti

    Arch Guillotti Senior Member Lifetime Donor Classifieds Approved SDN Administrator 10+ Year Member

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    Fixed that for you:prof:
     
  27. WholeLottaGame7

    WholeLottaGame7 10+ Year Member

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    Right here.
    No whyyyyy????? It brought me such joy!
     
  28. dilaudid

    dilaudid ASA Member 7+ Year Member

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    I have oral board review materials for sale. PM me if interested.
     
  29. painfree23

    painfree23

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    Dang sorry to hear :/ did you feel the test was unfair? What kind of stuff did u wish you prepared more ?
     
  30. behappy2004

    behappy2004

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  31. Swamp Gas

    Swamp Gas ASA Member 7+ Year Member

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    I passed last month reading the 6 UBP books and practicing with my co-fellow (about 10 a piece). UBP is gold, there were no surprises come game day. I made it through the books about twice but the last week or so I only focused on the areas where I was weak.
     
    vector2 likes this.
  32. ra233

    ra233 10+ Year Member

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    This may be a silly question, but do I have to do any CME activities this year? I finished residency in 2016, so I'm good there, but I don't know about 2017.
     
    painfree23 likes this.
  33. vector2

    vector2 ASA Member 10+ Year Member

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    I have the 2016 edition UBP books 2-6 for sale. Essentially pristine condition, have not been written in. PM for info
     
  34. mismatched

    mismatched 5+ Year Member

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    I passed too!!! I used Just Oral Boards and it was SO helpful.

    By the way, I have several books to sell too, PM for details.
     
  35. dilaudid

    dilaudid ASA Member 7+ Year Member

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    I also have several oral board books available. PM me for details.
     
  36. interscalene

    interscalene

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    I found out I failed yesterday also and I didnt think they would flunk me if i said i dont know a couple times. I am shocked and also depressed to know I will have to go threw the process once again and the only spot available was oct 2018!! I did Ubp twice and talked over some mock stems with a friend. It wasnt enough and or my deficiencies were greater than i thought
     
  37. Robotic Wis-Hipple

    Robotic Wis-Hipple

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    Sorry to hear that. My best advice would be to study broadly again next year and you may be best served taking a live course and/or more rigorous practice exams.
     
  38. ra233

    ra233 10+ Year Member

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    I am definitely going to do a live course. I am torn between the Jensen course in Raleigh and a UBP course. The reason I hesitate to do the UPB course is because the closest date to my exam is still 4 months before I take it. I think the Jensen course in Raleigh the week before my exam would be more beneficial. Thoughts?
     
  39. interscalene

    interscalene

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    Definately going to take a live course and between 2-3 months before exam time
     
    Last edited: Jun 27, 2017
  40. Robotic Wis-Hipple

    Robotic Wis-Hipple

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    As much as people say this is not a knowledge test, you can only say "I don't know" a couple times, so there's definitely value in studying broadly, especially areas you haven't been doing.

    With that said it absolutely is a reasoning and speaking test. You will be pushed, you will get put between a rock and a hard place, and you need to have stumbled getting your words out and organized your thoughts in order to describe navigating multiple pathways for different scenarios long before the day of the exam.
     
  41. dilaudid

    dilaudid ASA Member 7+ Year Member

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    I did the Ho course and I would highly recommend it. Whatever course you decide to do, I would do it sooner than the week before your exam. You need time to work on deficiences that may be exposed at the course. One course a few months before and another the week prior may not be a bad idea.
     
  42. jwizle

    jwizle ASA Member 5+ Year Member

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    Hey guys, I need an oral board parter to practice with. I'm schedule to take the orals in September. I'm using ultimate board prep. Message me if anyone is interested.
     
  43. Allu

    Allu 2+ Year Member

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    Sure... let's practice. Private message me.
     
  44. easternether

    easternether

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    I used justoralboards.com and you can't go wrong with them. Failed once with ho, and didn't want to go back to a lecture based course. Key i to practice, practice, and practice.
     
  45. axeon123

    axeon123 New Member 10+ Year Member

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    Took oral boards in June. First stem difficult (what a bunch of meanies; I also had a dream where the mean examiner showed up and started asking me questions again weeks after I found out my result). Second stem challenging but doable. I did not feel they fed me any bones for answers at any time.

    Primary source: UBP, and I always referenced Stoelting's (this book is gold, btw. I would have read the entire book a year earlier if I knew how helpful it was) for every condition because UBP doesn't always cover anything. only had a chance to go through UBP once. What I hated (flash cards- too concise; board stiff- too concise but did use the questions as a quick review/practice before the exam; rapid review- UBP covers everything already so not useful for me)
    Time spent: 2 months (wish I had more time). Unless you're a genius, I personally would not feel a few weeks before the exam is enough time. I forgot everything so UBP was essential to relearn anesthesia.
    (pro tip) Practice: ~15-20 sessions w/a friend (so that covered almost 40 cases from UBP)- did this every other day and used the off day to review the topics we did the day before; ~5 sessions with board examiners at by institution; any time I did UBP myself I break the stem down, then answer all the questions myself, then go through the UBP answers and take notes. your first sessions will be painful af, but it'll get better. burned out around 10-14 days before exam day so didn't do too many sessions anymore, just reviewing material.
    Result: pass
     
    vector2 and Robotic Wis-Hipple like this.
  46. SubclavianSteel

    SubclavianSteel 10+ Year Member

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    I passed on first attempt. Didn't practice but have been out in private practice 2 years (failed writtens more than once- goes to show you can know what you're doing and really be a bad test taker).

    No mock exams but studied Preds and pain as they're not a part of my practice. Just put myself in each situation and said what I'd do. Keep in mind I have to do this daily on every single case with CRNAs/surgeons and to a less medical extent- families/patient.

    My only advice- DON'T GET FLUSTERED! They examiners are supposed to question your choices even if you're right. I wish I didn't let that influence my following answers. Ugh.

    I also have Oral board material for sale:

    Board stiff $30 (no DVD) (the only item I actually used/read)
    Oral board flash cards $45
    Just oral boards manual $200

    Prices include shipping, PayPal only
    All items in good condition with no markings
    Come from a smoke free home
     
  47. kidthor

    kidthor meep 10+ Year Member

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    I'm still sad this isn't the oral boars thread anymore...

    In any event I passed awhile ago - used UBP and some ABA practice steps. Practice, practice, practice was the key.

    I'll also add that you should absolutely practice with any actual board examiners if you have access to them... it's hard for anyone else to replicate the way actual examiners lead you into the rapid purgatory of self doubt (whether you're right or wrong).
     
  48. jwizle

    jwizle ASA Member 5+ Year Member

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    So I took the oral boards this week. My first stem was tough. I was nervous and struggled, specifically on the postoperative section with the senior examiner. Said I don't know multiple times where the examiner hinted to answers. I did okay on the intraoperative part and did not make an "kill" errors (hopefully thats my saving grace for the struggles I had on the postoperative portion) Then on the grab backs struggled as well.

    The second stem was much better. Light and day compared to the first. My answer were clear and articulate and I was answering questions that were further down the line in their questioning in my present answers obviously after answering that question. I struggled with one of the grab backs and did fine with the other two.

    I'm concerned about failing obviously with the struggles on my first stem. We'll see. What are your thoughts?
     
  49. pgg

    pgg Laugh at me, will they? SDN Moderator 10+ Year Member

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    Sounds to me like a borderline pass on the 1st stem + a definite pass on the 2nd stem = pass
     
  50. psu07

    psu07 7+ Year Member

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    anyone else have any thoughts?
     
  51. Arch Guillotti

    Arch Guillotti Senior Member Lifetime Donor Classifieds Approved SDN Administrator 10+ Year Member

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    Physician

    I struggled mightily on some parts of the first stem but felt I did pretty good on the second one.

    I think this happens to a fair amount of folks. I passed and you probably will also.
     

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