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I'm currently in the middle of my surgical clerkship, and I'm falling in love with this specialty. I enjoy nearly every aspect from clinic to consultations to post op management: but, there is nothing as gratifying as the OR. I wake up every morning tired, but with a smile. The problem is I have severe rheumatoid arthritis and hip damage (long story unrelated to BMI). It's mainly controlled but there are days when my hips and shoulders dislike being attached to me. This makes surgeries that last longer than 4 or 5 hours painful especially without being able to sit. My question is, is there any way I can still complete a gen surg residency or pursue a surgical career? Does anybody know any surgical residents/surgeons with similar issues?
 

kemper6036

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I'm currently in the middle of my surgical clerkship, and I'm falling in love with this specialty. I enjoy nearly every aspect from clinic to consultations to post op management: but, there is nothing as gratifying as the OR. I wake up every morning tired, but with a smile. The problem is I have severe rheumatoid arthritis and hip damage (long story unrelated to BMI). It's mainly controlled but there are days when my hips and shoulders dislike being attached to me. This makes surgeries that last longer than 4 or 5 hours painful especially without being able to sit. My question is, is there any way I can still complete a gen surg residency or pursue a surgical career? Does anybody know any surgical residents/surgeons with similar issues?
Sorry you haven't gotten much of a response. I think the key thing would be to try to reach out to people with a similar condition and see how they manage. From a practical standpoint, I think the majority of general surgery cases are less than 4-5 hours, but there are some that can take longer as I'm sure you can guess. Good luck
 

doc05

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Sorry about your condition.

but given severe RA, I would strongly advise against a physically demanding career, meaning anything in surgery.

best of luck.
 

bannie22

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not many surgeries take 4-5 hours. and there are also many surgeries which u can sit and operate at the da vinci.
 

ThoracicGuy

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not many surgeries take 4-5 hours. and there are also many surgeries which u can sit and operate at the da vinci.
I had plenty of surgeries in residency that took 4-5 hours. There's also not all that many places that have a davinci and its use in general surgery isn't anywhere near say urology...
 
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Winged Scapula

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not many surgeries take 4-5 hours. and there are also many surgeries which u can sit and operate at the da vinci.
Even if the above were true, the issue is not single surgeries lasting 4-5 hours but the OP being on his feet for that length of time.

I can assure the OP that even with shorter surgeries, as a surgical resident, you are commonly on your feet for significant portion of the day. Unless the OP tells us that a mere 5 minutes of sitting every 4-5 hours is enough to relieve the pain, then I'm afraid his disease is a serious issue.
 
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