anicha06

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Hi all,

I'm a MS4 at UCSF, got a 222 on my boards and no honors in 3rd yr.
I'm trying to decide between Gas and ER but don't know if I'm comp in either.
Can anyone help?

Thanks
 

GasEmDee

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anicha06 said:
Hi all,

I'm a MS4 at UCSF, got a 222 on my boards and no honors in 3rd yr.
I'm trying to decide between Gas and ER but don't know if I'm comp in either.
Can anyone help?

Thanks
Don't base your career decision on your perceived competitiveness for a given specialty. I think this especially applies to your situation, since the difference in competitiveness between ER and anesthesia is relatively small. I think the former is more competitive than the later, but the gap has closed significantly in the past several years.

Which career do you think you'd enjoy more? Many medical students have boiled down their decision to these two specialties, because they have a number of similarities (sharp separation of work and home life, high acuity, procedures, no longitudinal care, good compensation, etc). There are also some very significant differences between the two careers as well.

No one can really predict your chances. There are too many variables at work. I would say though, that if you want a career in ER or anesthesia, there are spots to be had....and if you REALLY cannot decide between the two, you could rank them both on your match list (but I dont recommend this).


Good luck!
 

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DreamMachine said:
Transfer to a better medical school or get a LOR from Dr. Miller.
:laugh: Yeah, sheesh, you should have thought of this before you decided to go to UCSF.
 

Laryngospasm

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anicha06 said:
Hi all,

I'm a MS4 at UCSF, got a 222 on my boards and no honors in 3rd yr.
I'm trying to decide between Gas and ER but don't know if I'm comp in either.
Can anyone help?

Thanks

No offense, but anesthesiology and ER are about as different as you get, if you really think that these two are similar, you better do a little more investigating.
 

Trisomy13

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Laryngospasm said:
No offense, but anesthesiology and ER are about as different as you get, if you really think that these two are similar, you better do a little more investigating.

GasEmDee pointed out some valid similarities, and it's not the first time I've heard someone consider EM vs. Gas for those reasons. I even considered EM briefly for some of the reasons listed, before remembering how much I dislike taking an H&P from your typical EM patient. And everything else about the typical EM patient. shudder
 

Laryngospasm

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Trisomy13 said:
GasEmDee pointed out some valid similarities, and it's not the first time I've heard someone consider EM vs. Gas for those reasons. I even considered EM briefly for some of the reasons listed, before remembering how much I dislike taking an H&P from your typical EM patient. And everything else about the typical EM patient. shudder

Sorry but the reality is that these are two very different fields, similarities can be drawn between every two specialties. The work environment is different, the hours you work are totally different the way you take care of your patients is totally different. Im sorry, but the only people who consider these two things similar are medical students who havent done either. Figure out what you want, and are going into, and go for it.
 
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anicha06

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Thanks for the replies everyone.

I'm interested in EM and Gas for their similarities and differences. I don't think one specialty fits me better than the other. I'm really interested in my competetiveness (or lack of) in these fields because I need to stay in Cali due to family obligations. If I'm really not comp in either than I will have to do something else.
 

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nolagas

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I've heard a lot of mention of family obligations, but I don't follow you. I could see you needing to stay in the bay area for family obligations, but how can you just need to stay in california? If you're obligations are in SF, then you'll be no more available in San Diego than you would be in Portland, Seattle, Salt Lake, Phoenix, etc. By 'I need to stay in Cali due to family obligations' do you mean that you just want to stay there? It doesn't add up.
 

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Excellent comment to a statement that is often proclaimed.

To the OP, if you are clinically strong, work hard and don't have a personality d/o, you will match at UCSF or at least a nearby school- I would imagine.


nolagas said:
I've heard a lot of mention of family obligations, but I don't follow you. I could see you needing to stay in the bay area for family obligations, but how can you just need to stay in california? If you're obligations are in SF, then you'll be no more available in San Diego than you would be in Portland, Seattle, Salt Lake, Phoenix, etc. By 'I need to stay in Cali due to family obligations' do you mean that you just want to stay there? It doesn't add up.
 

Trisomy13

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Laryngospasm said:
Sorry but the reality is that these are two very different fields, similarities can be drawn between every two specialties. The work environment is different, the hours you work are totally different the way you take care of your patients is totally different. Im sorry, but the only people who consider these two things similar are medical students who havent done either. Figure out what you want, and are going into, and go for it.

No need to be so sorry. I don't mind if we disgree. :)
 
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anicha06

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nolagas said:
I've heard a lot of mention of family obligations, but I don't follow you. I could see you needing to stay in the bay area for family obligations, but how can you just need to stay in california? If you're obligations are in SF, then you'll be no more available in San Diego than you would be in Portland, Seattle, Salt Lake, Phoenix, etc. By 'I need to stay in Cali due to family obligations' do you mean that you just want to stay there? It doesn't add up.
Nor Cal is ideal but if that's not possible than yes anything within a 1hr flight would work
 

bubalus

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There's nothing wrong with considering 2 different specialties. In addition to anesthesia, I liked radiology and dermatology. Let me pre-empt the snickers. I actually liked the subject material and the daily work in those specialties, and I could have been happy in either, even though they're quite different. So there's nothing wrong with trying to decide between ER and anesthesia even though they may be more different than general surgery and urology.

220 is an OK board score. It's not 260, but it's also not 200. No honors has different meanings depending on how many honors are given out. If everyone got honors in everything and you didn't, that has a different meaning than if 10% get honors, 10% get high pass, and the rest pass. Our transcripts showed the grade breakdown for each rotation so anyone seeing it could get an idea of what a a grade really means.

If you absolutely have to be in California, and you'd rather be in California than in a specific specialty, then apply to both, and apply to every California program in each specialty. The next question is, "Would you rather match outside California or not match at all?" Only you can decide that.

You can't do much about what is already done. You may want to take step 2 early, but not release the scores until you see them, and if they're better, then release them. For this to work, you have to have your ERAS stuff out before your step 2 scores come back, and you need to make sure you check the correct box when asked about the automatic updating of USMLE scores. However, if you do the same or worse on Step 2, you're probably better of not releasing them. Some people are able to increase their scores. I didn't. My Step 1-3 scores varied by a total of 4 points. So while some may say I didn't improve, I choose to think that it represents consistent performance

Good luck.
 

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Laryngospasm said:
Sorry but the reality is that these are two very different fields, similarities can be drawn between every two specialties. The work environment is different, the hours you work are totally different the way you take care of your patients is totally different. Im sorry, but the only people who consider these two things similar are medical students who havent done either. Figure out what you want, and are going into, and go for it.

Couldn't agree more...as far as PRACTICING is concerned, very very different specialties. Look beyond the handfull of procedures ER and Gas share.
 
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anicha06

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Why are you guy discussing if they're similar or not... that wasn't my question.

Thanks to those who actually gave some useful info.
 

Laryngospasm

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anicha06 said:
Why are you guy discussing if they're similar or not... that wasn't my question.

Thanks to those who actually gave some useful info.
Because many medical students have a distorted idea about what a specialty entails, and many just choose based on prestige, perceived "easyness", and income. Its one of the bigest failures of our medical system, that students have such a hard time figuring out what a field is actually like. Instead of choosing based on what they would fit into, like, etc..they say ooooh, if I do that I could work forty hours a week and make 250K. Just trying to help, I think judging by your responses you would be an excellent fit in an ER career.
 

phillyfornia

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i'm in a similar boat (deciding between EM an Anesthesia) and i don't see why people have a problem with someone liking 2 different specialties. i'm not sure about the rest of you guys, but there isn't one single specialty that is perfect for me. there are some things that i like each specialty and there are some things that i dislike about every specialty.
 

Robert Loblaw

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not enough is said about the importance of picking a speciality based on similar personality types...

let's say you finish third year and have found that you enjoyed everything, no one thing stands out, and only a few specialties are really off your list...at this point, looking at other factors (hours, money, shift work) is a reasonable thing to do when comparing specialties. however, i think one of the strongest predictors of future professional satisfaction is whether one's personality is similar to the majority of resident's and attendings in the field. for example, if you tend to prefer decisiveness and dichotomous solutions to problems (whack first, as questions later; it's either bleeding or it's not bleeding), you might be a surgeon of the future. if you prefer to ponder the unknown, make sense of antithetically competing test-results, or blame every unexplainable symptom or test on lupus, you might be an internist.

i've found that anesthesiologists tend to be detail-oriented, task-oriented, often laid back and not too serious, with a somewhat mechanized response to impending tragedy that leave most people wearing boxer short #2 on the day...

i try to remember that i will be interacting with colleagues for life--it's important for me to know that i can, at the very least, tolerate them...
 
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