Best Books for Surgery shelf (Pestana?)

Discussion in 'Clinical Rotations' started by Staco, Jan 2, 2018.

  1. Staco

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    I start my surgery rotation soon and was wondering what's the best approach to rocking the Shelf?

    At the moment, I'm thinking deVirgilio, uworld, OME, Pestana Audio, and the Pestana PDF (Surgery review). How does that seem?

    I'm also a little confused on Pestana. I hear people talking about some "little green book" or something? Is that something different that I should be looking into? All I have is the 79 page outline in PDF form.
     
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  3. Jesus1

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    You're using too much. To rock the shelf, all you need is DeVirgilio, UWorld, and the questions in the back of the Pestana book (no need to read the mainstream text). Pretest may help with some of the bizarre questions that you'll invariably meet on the shelf.
     
  4. Dares Dareson

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    I honored surgery using a combination of:

    DeVirgilio to learn stuff
    PreTest for practice
    UWorld for practice

    Pestanas is only useful as a quick reference so you don't look like a complete idiot in the OR. But if you rely on Pestanas alone, you won't honor and you may not pass.
     
  5. ricksimmonsrafowens

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    I honored my surgery rotation, and I used these guys:

    UWorld (questions are way way simpler than what I saw on the shelf)
    Pestana - I did only the questions in the back... I think I'm the only person in my class who actively avoided Pestana, because I thought it was a very abridged, superficial version of the NMS books.
    Pre-test - very detail oriented, helpful for some obscure pimp questions
    NMS Surgery and the NMS Surgery casebook - this was 100% the most high yield source for the shelf!
    deVirgilio - helpful for pimp questions and the second most high yield source for the shelf after NMS books.
    I also used Step Up to Medicine to review a bunch of GI stuff (and some other medicine stuff), which was helpful for reinforcement.

    The shelf itself was wild - lots of GYN questions, ventilator management, almost no GI questions (lol), lots of vascular/urology/orthopedics, so definitely read up on GYN and respiratory physiology.
     
  6. DareGreatly

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    Limit your resources or else you won't use UWorld and your resources effectively, and/or you will be extremely burned out and not do your best. I took a look at this: Surgery Books for Medical Students — CrushMedSchool and used De Virgilio and Pestana's in addition to UWorld. Good luck!
     
  7. Coupd'Cat

    Coupd'Cat Caught in Life's Washcycle

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    I would also suggest, if you have time, the major non-surgical UW sections: GI, Cardio in particular. A lot of my classmates and I came out of the shelf feeling like it was more IM heavy than we expected.
     
  8. Staco

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    From googling, it does look like the surgery shelf is a lot of medicine and that trauma is pretty low yield?

    Would you guys recommend focusing on GI/pulm/Cardio on Uworld instead of the Surgery questions?
     
  9. ricksimmonsrafowens

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    Renal too. Cardio or pull - some questions are helpful, but don't get lost in IM minutiae.
     
  10. Anicetus

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    I love it when people say “all you need” in the same sentence as de virgilios when it’s a giant textbook that was impossible for my classmates to go through more than once IF that. If you’re a speed reader with a great memory then it’s a great resource. Otherwise it wasn’t for everyone.
     
  11. AthleteDoc7

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    Exactly. So true. Plus surgery hours are crazy for most places, I don't know how or why people torture themselves.

    All I used was:
    -Pestana x2 with all the questions in the back of it
    -OME surgery vids
    -surgery uworld with incorrects
    -some IM Uworld sections (GI and renal of highest yield IMO)
    -Emma Holliday video + the practice NBMEs the week of the shelf

    This was plenty to honor this comfortably for me. keep it simple and you'll be fine.
     
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  12. hckyplyr

    hckyplyr My fighting days are over

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    I'm confused. Is the Pestana's that everyone refers to the 256 page "Dr. Pestana's Surgery Notes" or is everyone referring to the 92 page "Surgery Review" green pdf? Thank you
     
  13. AthleteDoc7

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    the 256 page book on Amazon. it's really like ~150 short pages of text to read and 180 practice questions in the back with explanations.
     
  14. tthhrrooaawwaayy

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  15. NeurologyHopeful2018

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    DeVirgilio is a great resource but very voluminous. I barely had time to get through it once and things didnt stick all that well.
     
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  17. Free411

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    So I used DeVirgilio's and honored the exam. I agree it's pretty dense and has a lot of material that is clearly not going to be on the shelf. The key to getting through DeVirgilio's comfortably is to read it actively and with a purpose. Skip all the useless stuff: steps of surgical procedure, controversies in medicine, specifics of treatment/diagnostic approaches (for example: that in infant populations with indirect inguinal hernia, surgeons check for bilateral herniation - that is just so specific and not shelf material), etc. As cliche as this sounds, stay focused on the big picture.

    Read to develop a surgical/clinical approach to common scenarios. For example, what's your mental algorithm for a patient with a groin mass, nausea, and vomiting? DeVirgilio is great for explaining how to approach this and providing reasoning for each step along the workup. You can easily read 30-40 pgs/night or day if you allow yourself to skim/speed read stuff that isn't useful (also assuming you're not on a surgical service that is insanely busy).

    Also, don't take too many notes, try to be judicious in your note taking.
     

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