white daisy

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does anyone know if a person who has completed or is completing his/her residency in family medicine can successfully match into an anesthesia program? I am in fam med right now. am seriously thinking about doing another residency in anesthesia... just wondering if anyone has gone through the same thing. switching from fam med to gas. thanks.
 

dbiddy808

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I just recently replied to a similar thread to this one. I am a second year internal medicine resident who matched this year.

I think that previous residency experience, as long as you get letters saying that you are a good resident, is a positive thing. You are competing against med students and will likely be more mature and know a heck of alot more than them both during your interviews and during your CA-1 year.

I say go for it. I can't imagine punishment worse than practicing family practice for 20-30 years. Anesthetists make 2-4 times more money as well, which is something to think about.
 
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pmichaelmd

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Greetings,
I did what you describe. My path was non-traditional, but similar. I finished med school in 2000, did an internship in FP, and then served my utilization tour in the Navy. I am finishing that up now and will be starting gas in 2 months. I was part of the 2003 Match and found that my history of FP coupled with the several years as a general practitioner were looked upon favorably by many gas programs. As is said above, just make sure you get good letters from your FP program and let the gas programs know that you are a solid resident.

Good luck!

PMMD
 

BassDominator

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Very possible.... met several people on the interview trail that had done it. I think one even made chief resident.
 

white daisy

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i can't possibly imagine asking my FP attendings to write me reference letters to another specialty!!! How did you guys do it? I mean, do we have to tell the writers what we need the letter for? I just don't get it.
 

BassDominator

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white daisy said:
i can't possibly imagine asking my FP attendings to write me reference letters to another specialty!!! How did you guys do it? I mean, do we have to tell the writers what we need the letter for? I just don't get it.
I think most programs want a letter from your current program director. It's usually in addition to the three standard letters. Basically, they want to know that you're not leaving because you're totally incompetent or something. Also, it tells them how well you function as a resident.... which is really what they want to know.

Sure, it's tough to ask.... but I think most programs would understand. They would be annoyed, but they don't want unhappy residents around either.
 

pmichaelmd

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white daisy said:
i can't possibly imagine asking my FP attendings to write me reference letters to another specialty!!! How did you guys do it? I mean, do we have to tell the writers what we need the letter for? I just don't get it.
It can be scary to ask your current PD for a letter. I was lucky in that I had already completed internship and was off doing an operational tour with the military and, thus, wasn't necessarily expected to return to family medicine. He was a little disappointed that I chose a different specialty but was happy to write the letter. Actually, the department secretary often plays a very large role as she is the one who actually wrote my letter and had him sign it.
I agree that few programs want a disinterested or unhappy resident. Just make sure you have a good barometer on your PD's temperment; it would be quite easy for him/her to screw you with a sealed letter as "punishment" for leaving the program.
 

dbiddy808

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I never asked my program director. I got all three of my letters from critical care attendings. I figure that's as close as an internal medicine specialty gets to anesthesia. Nobody asked me about my program director.
 
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