As a DO, is it necessary to take the USMLE for the following specialities....


Senior Member
10+ Year Member
15+ Year Member
Nov 29, 2000
Queens, NY, USA
    No, it is not necessary to take the USMLE for residency in these fields. There are AOA approved programs in these specialties in NYC as well as ACGME programs that accept the COMLEX. However, I would recommend taking it to increase your chances at "better" hospitals. Don't limit yourself, but be prepared to study a bit more for the USMLE (so I have been told by professors and students who took both).

    Personally, I'm taking both since I want to come back home to NYC.


    7+ Year Member
    15+ Year Member
    Mar 6, 2002
      Take the USMLE!!!!!!!! If you end up wanting an ACGME program you will need them!!!! I assure you that DO students who have taken USMLE have a much greater chance of getting a slot than those who did not.. I had multiple program directors in general surgery tell me exactly that.... It is not even a question in my book.
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      Senior Member
      7+ Year Member
      15+ Year Member
      Jul 17, 2001
        Don't leave any doors closed or regret not taking the USMLE. Worse case scenario is that you can cancel the test if you feel like you bombed. I too, had many program directors tell me that it was to my advantage to take the USMLE. Plus, during my interviews, most MD programs commented on my USMLE score and kind of just passed over my COMLEX. I even got a lot of early interviews because ERAS sends your USMLE score and not your COMLEX which is what the school sends out with your dean's letter.

        Dr Redcross

        Junior Member
        7+ Year Member
        15+ Year Member
        May 13, 2002
          Hey Mr Happy Clown Guy,
          Why do you say NOT to take Step 2 of the USMLE for DO students?? I was curious about that because I have not taken the USMLE step 1 but planned on taking Step 2 right after taking COMLEX step 2..since the USMLE allows people to take the Steps 1 and 2 in EITHER order. My thinking was that many programs look at the Step 2 more heavily then the step one. By the way, i plan on applying for a ACGME surgery residency this up coming year. Thanks for your insight


          10+ Year Member
          15+ Year Member
          Oct 13, 2000
          Trying to escape Libtardia
          1. Attending Physician
            Worst fears:

            1) Kicking on COMLEX...doing "so-so" on USMLE
            2) Having USMLE chock-full of "stats" and "research" <img border="0" title="" alt="[Eek!]" src="eek.gif" />
            3) Knowing that the allo EM Residency programs I'm looking at really don't mind, and DO know and understand COMLEX -- ie: "DO friendly" Residencies -- and still taking USMLE anyway when it doesn't "matter" (this according to the Residents that I've spoken to that are in the programs that I'm interested in)
            4) Taking USMLE "FSAG" -- can I NOT report the scores if they are crap -- ie: bury the bad scores?

            Any deep thoughts from the audience??


            Kat :D
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