How about applying to a prelim program at a program that only has categorical? For example, if program A only has categorical anesthesia and not advanced, can I apply to program A's prelim medicine program without problem? Will they hold this against me (ie the prelim would be in case I match to a different program's advanced anesthesia spot)?
I see no reason why they would hold it against you if you applied to both their categorical and prelim spots if they only have categorical. I think again (if they even care one way or another, which I highly doubt) that it could only be a good thing. It's like saying, "If I can't do your categorical program, I at least want to be able to do 1 year here".which I think could only be good!