Aug 13, 2017
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Medical Student
Still trying to decide between radiology or anesthesia but wanted to see how my chances were for both fields. Specifically wanted to know if I should do audition rotations and how broadly I should apply. Not looking to go somewhere extremely competitive but an academic program or a large community program would be ideal. Thank you!

DO student
Step 1: 237
Step 2: 252
Comlex Level 1/2: 650+
no first author pubs but some anesthesia related research submitted (wish I had radiology research but before I try and get some, wanted to know if it is necessary)
D1 college athlete (not too relevant but will go on my resume regardless)
 

bashwell

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Mar 20, 2013
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Still trying to decide between radiology or anesthesia but wanted to see how my chances were for both fields. Specifically wanted to know if I should do audition rotations and how broadly I should apply. Not looking to go somewhere extremely competitive but an academic program or a large community program would be ideal. Thank you!

DO student
Step 1: 237
Step 2: 252
Comlex Level 1/2: 650+
no first author pubs but some anesthesia related research submitted (wish I had radiology research but before I try and get some, wanted to know if it is necessary)
D1 college athlete (not too relevant but will go on my resume regardless)
See NRMP charting outcomes for DOs (2016). Double check but here's what I see:

Given 651-700 on Comlex level 1: 19 matched and 0 did not match in anesthesia.
Given 651-700 on Comlex level 2: 17 matched and 1 did not match in anesthesia.

Given 651-700 on Comlex level 1: 14 matched and 2 did not match in radiology (DR).
Given 651-700 on Comlex level 2: 15 matched and 0 did not match in radiology (DR).

Anesthesia probably more so than DR would think it's cooler that you were a division 1 college athlete. If you mention that in the interview, that might be something some interviewers would enjoy talking about.

Bottom line: You're competitive for either anesthesia or radiology (DR) as long as you apply broadly, so I would just choose the one you like better and can see yourself doing for 30+ years.

However consider you'll most likely have to do fellowships for both fields, though less so for anesthesia than DR. If you read the rads forum, it seems DR all but requires a fellowship now, whereas if you read the anesthesia forum there still seem to be a lot of places where being a general anesthesiologist is fine but some attendings over on the anesthesia forum will tell you a fellowship is a good idea as future insurance against CRNAs and other trends in anesthesiology. Personally I think IR (assuming you can still do IR from DR?) would be the best of all the anesthesia/rads options, though it's also one of the most competitive fellowships. But both fields have several cool fellowships in my opinion. So again it's really up to you. Despite all the SDN doom and gloom in both specialties, a lot of attendings in both will tell you they're still good specialties. You're in a good position in being competitive for both. Good luck!
 
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Cyal

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Oct 13, 2012
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Radiology resident here. Radiology is more competitive, but also requires more independent reading than anesthesia. Research is more high-yield for top programs.
 

DrfluffyMD

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Not sure if many radiology programs use the COMLEX. The PD in the radiology pd ama thread for example, do not use the COMLEX score at all.
 

IlDestriero

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Seems like you'll do fine.


--
Il Destriero
 

jw3600

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See NRMP charting outcomes for DOs (2016). Double check but here's what I see:

Given 651-700 on Comlex level 1: 19 matched and 0 did not match in anesthesia.
Given 651-700 on Comlex level 2: 17 matched and 1 did not match in anesthesia.

Given 651-700 on Comlex level 1: 14 matched and 2 did not match in radiology (DR).
Given 651-700 on Comlex level 2: 15 matched and 0 did not match in radiology (DR).

Anesthesia probably more so than DR would think it's cooler that you were a division 1 college athlete. If you mention that in the interview, that might be something some interviewers would enjoy talking about.

Bottom line: You're competitive for either anesthesia or radiology (DR) as long as you apply broadly, so I would just choose the one you like better and can see yourself doing for 30+ years.

However consider you'll most likely have to do fellowships for both fields, though less so for anesthesia than DR. If you read the rads forum, it seems DR all but requires a fellowship now, whereas if you read the anesthesia forum there still seem to be a lot of places where being a general anesthesiologist is fine but some attendings over on the anesthesia forum will tell you a fellowship is a good idea as future insurance against CRNAs and other trends in anesthesiology. Personally I think IR (assuming you can still do IR from DR?) would be the best of all the anesthesia/rads options, though it's also one of the most competitive fellowships. But both fields have several cool fellowships in my opinion. So again it's really up to you. Despite all the SDN doom and gloom in both specialties, a lot of attendings in both will tell you they're still good specialties. You're in a good position in being competitive for both. Good luck!
Not trying to be argumentative because you're probably more informed than me. Keep in mind that those outcomes for DO students don't have USMLE scores. It only lists comlex scores which are meaningless for Acgme rads/gas. So in reality that data is barely more than trash. Unfortunate, as it could have been super helpful. That said I believe op is competitve for either.
 

bashwell

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Not trying to be argumentative because you're probably more informed than me. Keep in mind that those outcomes for DO students don't have USMLE scores. It only lists comlex scores which are meaningless for Acgme rads/gas. So in reality that data is barely more than trash. Unfortunate, as it could have been super helpful. That said I believe op is competitve for either.
Lol, it's cool I actually think your main point is a completely fair point, though I don't think I'd say it's barely more than trash, but I agree with you it is a good and fair point to keep in mind. As for OP he or she did provide USMLE scores which I think I should've done NRMP images for as well, but I'm too lazy now so maybe OP can look them up him or herself. But I agree OP is still competitive for either.
 

jw3600

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Lol, it's cool I actually think your main point is a completely fair point, though I don't think I'd say it's barely more than trash, but I agree with you it is a good and fair point to keep in mind. As for OP he or she did provide USMLE scores which I think I should've done NRMP images for as well, but I'm too lazy now so maybe OP can look them up him or herself. But I agree OP is still competitive for either.
The problem is that we don't have data for DO match rates associated with USMLE. That's where the real meaningful use is.
 
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bashwell

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The problem is that we don't have data for DO match rates associated with USMLE. That's where the real meaningful use is.
Best OP can do is just use their COMLEX scores and see above, or use their USMLE scores and see how they'd rate against MDs with the same scores. Granted there's possibly DO bias, but then OP did get 237/252 which is above average even for MDs at least in anesthesia and I think rads too but I know rads less well. OP also can check out individual programs to see if they take DOs. Programs also sometimes list USMLE cutoffs and a lot less frequently COMLEX too, so OP can get a rough idea. It's a rough estimate but best we currently got, I'm afraid. Anesthesia very DO friendly in many programs, I know less about rads.
 
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guytakingboards

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I can only speak from personal experience but at my lower-tier state, tertiary academic program those Step scores would likely get you an interview in radiology. We're relatively DO friendly having taken an average of one every other year but having 3 in the current intern class.

There's only been a few med students (internal or external) that have particularly impressed me one way or another. That being said my PD really takes the time to learn about rotating external students and getting in his good graces really helps both internal and external students alike at rank time.

-A chief resident in radiology.