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Gift for New General Surgery Resident

Discussion in 'Surgery and Surgical Subspecialties' started by mrmandrake, May 1, 2007.

  1. mrmandrake

    mrmandrake 7+ Year Member

    Sep 13, 2006

    Quick question. My brother is starting his general residency soon. I want to get him something he can put to good use. Price range is up to around $300. Please let me know if anything really stood out as something you needed in your residency. Thank you.
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  3. footcramp

    footcramp Senior Member 5+ Year Member


    I would want some furniture, especially a comfortable bed or couch.
  4. mrmandrake

    mrmandrake 7+ Year Member

    Sep 13, 2006
    Well ... he lives across the country so something heavy wouldn't really be an option. Thanks for the suggestion though, I think he is looking for a good bed himself.

    Any other takers?
  5. Bitsy3221

    Bitsy3221 5+ Year Member

    Sep 28, 2006
    The Hub
    Honestly, I wanted more practical gifts. I made sure to have my folks tell anyone who was interested in gift giving to avoid all hokey doctor/office stuff: nameplates, bags, historical books, pens, figurines, etc. To be fair, one of the primary reasons for this is I am moving to a tiny apartment in a VERY expensive city in another part of the country, and I would have no place to put these things, nor will I have office space (at work or at home) for many, many years. Not to mention I remember when my boyfriend started his internship 7 years ago--he STILL has yet to use the very thoughtful but impractical gifts I mentioned above.

    I, too, am in the market for a good bed (knowing I will need to make the most out of the little time I will spend in said bed, so I want it to be comfortable) You can't buy it for him, but maybe you could give him a gift certificate or write the check and designate it as going toward the purchase of a new bed.

    Honestly, right now I am looking for little conveniences that will make my life easier in the upcoming months. Maybe a gift certificate for a house cleaning service? Does he have a dog? How about a dog walking service? In all seriousness, $300 of gas or groceries would feel like I hit the jackpot right now.

    Other things that might be nice, depending on his needs/likes:
    Textbook or Surgical Atlas (these can be really expensive; my program required me to have one before I got there and the book-allowance kicked in; check this one out:
    Gift certificate for travel (important for those few vacations that will arise)
    Electronics always work (Palm, iPod, new TV, camera, etc. etc. etc. although he may have this stuff, find out if he is looking to upgrade)

    If you really feel the need to get him something medically related, you can always split the money you were going to spend and get a small, token historical book or historical framed print and put some cash/check/gift certificate inside.
  6. BlackSails

    BlackSails 2+ Year Member

    Apr 4, 2007
    If he does not have a "good" stethoscope, you can buy him a nice one.

    Master Cardiology here is 138 + personalization for 15. Its below your price range though.

    As said above, a new PDA might also be a useful gift.
  7. tussy

    tussy Senior Member 10+ Year Member

    Feb 12, 1999

    You do not need a "master cardiology" in surgery. you just need a basic stethoscope that lets you hear heart sounds and breath sounds. His med school one will be more than adequate.

    A maid service would be an awesome gift - or some service that prepared meals for you as well. Surgery doesn't allow much free time for that sort of thing.

    If his program doesn't pay for books then a gift cert for a surgery book would be nice. Some programs give money for this though.

    Nice clogs for the OR are another option if he doesn't own a pair.
  8. BlackSails

    BlackSails 2+ Year Member

    Apr 4, 2007
    Yeah, my bad. I was reading several of the forums at once, and thought this was in general residency
  9. Winged Scapula

    Winged Scapula Cougariffic! Staff Member Administrator Physician Faculty Lifetime Donor Classifieds Approved 15+ Year Member

    Apr 9, 2000
    hSDN Member
    I agree with Bitsy...non-medical gifts are the best.

    I received several embroidered lab coats - trouble was, without the hospital insignia and department on them, they didn't look as nice as the others (and a couple were the sort medical student type ones) - and a medical bag which looks nice, but I have nothing to carry in it, except maybe my lunch!

    While a text is nice, make sure you are getting one that he doesn't already have and will use. If you could get it autographed by the author (ie, a big name in surgery), that might make the book special.

    Otherwise, things like maid service, food gift certificates, really nice sheets, homey stuff would be greatly appreciated, I'm sure.
  10. sponch

    sponch Senior Member 7+ Year Member

    Dec 24, 2002
    Palo Alto, CA
    what about paying his first month's deposit since with the exception of the rich people we're all strapped for cash these days?
  11. Winged Scapula

    Winged Scapula Cougariffic! Staff Member Administrator Physician Faculty Lifetime Donor Classifieds Approved 15+ Year Member

    Apr 9, 2000
    hSDN Member

    Can you get it back when he moves out?

    The gift that keeps on giving!:D
  12. robotech

    robotech New Member

    Jul 21, 2005
    How about a PDA or a smartphone so he can load it up with pharmaceutical info, etc. He probably has one that he used in school but wouldn't mind a fancy new one I bet.
  13. Bitsy3221

    Bitsy3221 5+ Year Member

    Sep 28, 2006
    The Hub
    Another thought (since I just got mine today :D and trying to figure out what to do with it) if you want to get something "medically related": You could arrange for his diploma to be framed.
  14. dynx

    dynx Yankee Imperialist 10+ Year Member

    A friend of mine once got me a $200 gift card for a local restruant near my place that delivers...THAT came in handy when I could call on my way home and just beat them there. I can only imagine that it would be even more usefull in residency.
  15. surgical06

    surgical06 Junior Member 2+ Year Member

    Apr 17, 2006
    things i would like to have when i start in june

    1. gas grill for the balcony (its quick and tasty)
    2. T-vo or however u spell that. maybe u can get him the tvo and a years subscription
    3. PDA (only if he found one usefull in med school
    4. a couple of cases of red bull, granola bars
    5 if in a cold city, an automatic starter for the car. that would be awsome!
  16. VAspa

    VAspa Guest

    Nov 11, 2002
    This is what I'd get somebody starting a surgery residency for around $300:

    1. Get him "bob"
    He can take a piece of masking tape, tape it to "bob's" forehead and write the name of the attending or resident that gave him a hard time, then get out some stored up frustration from his day at work. I wish I had this. Or.....

    2. More practical, get him a half decent bicycle....exercising is tough during residency, and if he lives close enough to the hospital he can ride to and from work. Or.....

    3. The cleaning lady mentioned earlier would be a good move. Or....

    4. Airplane ticket home at a time of his discretion.

    Whatever you do with it, don't get hime something medical. His life will be nothing but medical for the next few years. Just my two cents from the point of view of a PGY4
  17. SLUser11

    SLUser11 CRS 10+ Year Member

    Feb 22, 2005
    Every single time I'm in Sports Authority, I feel compelled to at least give Bob a good body punch. Sometimes, I give him a 3-4 punch combo.....I can't help it....I wonder if it's the meathead in me trying to get out....

    I keep waiting for Bob to show up in my house for Christmas or my birthday....until then, I guess I'll just have to keep beating up homeless people......:(
  18. Pilot Doc

    Pilot Doc SDN Angel Moderator Emeritus 7+ Year Member

    Mar 6, 2002
    I'd generally agree with the theme of non-medical gifts that make life easier. Food is always good - X of the month club, etc.
  19. njbmd

    njbmd Guest Moderator Emeritus 5+ Year Member

    May 30, 2001
    Gone Walkabout!
    All of the above are great. The best gifts that I received for graduation was multiple restaurant gift certificates. I received cards for Starbucks, Outback, Olive Garden, Red Lobster and Cheesecake Factory. These really came in handy when I was just too exhausted to cook or needed a "steamin cup of Joe".

    The cleaning service would have been nice. I have now learned to live with dust. It is my friend.
  20. Sweet Tea

    Sweet Tea Girl Next Door Physician 10+ Year Member

    Things I have gotten:
    Programmable coffeemaker/grinder that turns itself off after 3 hours.
    Leather desk organizer
    Matching leather pen holder
    Matching leather 3x5 card holder
    Visit from a cleaning service...I'm not moving and there's quite a dust build-up
    2 months paid rent (because I have the best fiance in the world)

    Clearly, my friends and family are incredibly awesome. In all honesty, I wish that my parents had not spent the money on the leather desk stuff. It's beautiful, and it will last me forever, but I just don't see myself spending that much time with it next year and it's just going to get dusty on my desk. A better gift would have been the gift cards to restaurants or a TiVo box. The 3x5 card holder will be useful for me b/c it's pocket-sized and I'm addicted to 3x5 cards. I'm in love with the coffeemaker, though, and I'm so, so grateful that my fiance paid my rent (though he may have done it just so I wouldn't complain about being broke so much :laugh: ).

    The best gifts are non-medical. No one has a use for a doctor bag, lab coats are usually provided by the residency, and they're going to have access to all the books they need. Fancy pens are nice (and I love pens), but they're not going to get much use at the hospital, land where nice pens are routinely stolen. Find what kind of cheap black pen they like and then buy that in bulk...that's a truly useful gift!
  21. surg

    surg 10+ Year Member

    Dec 16, 2001
    Got to second either food or cleaning. The most precious thing to a resident is sleep and free time. Anything that you give that provides them more of either is surely to be appreciated.
    If you wanted something cool, you could try getting him a subscription to a concierge service that runs errands and stuff like that. I can't count the number of residents who never get their oil changed, cleaning dropped off/picked up, etc. since they are never out of the hospital during waking hours (although the 80hr workweek has lessened that issue more I think).
  22. Dr JPH

    Dr JPH Banned Banned 10+ Year Member

    Feb 4, 2000
    Gel pens. Thats what I want when I graduate.

    I also have a standing order for a new watch every time I hit any milestone (finishing research, matching, graduation). Something nice yet simple with a second hand. I am always losing mine or scratching it up pretty bad.

    A debit card to Starbucks, Dunkin Donuts or WaWa (for us pennsylvania folk) for coffee.

    My final idea is a bunch of really nice Cedar clothes hangers. I am slowly cycling out all of my college "white plastic" clothes hangers and switching to cedar.

    I get mine at

    They are pricey but well worth it. As early as I need to get up in the morning, after a hot shower there is no better feeling that putting on a shirt or coat that has been hanging on a cedar hanger. Smells great, no creases.

    (excuse me...I need to go smell my closet)
  23. Winged Scapula

    Winged Scapula Cougariffic! Staff Member Administrator Physician Faculty Lifetime Donor Classifieds Approved 15+ Year Member

    Apr 9, 2000
    hSDN Member
    That is a wonderful idea. I had a hard time picking up/dropping off dry cleaning, getting my car serviced, doing laundry (of course that was in the pre 80 hrs days, but its still a problem) as well. Someone to do it for me - typically known as a wife - would have been a welcome gift.:laugh:
  24. surgdo

    surgdo 5+ Year Member

    Oct 20, 2006
    If they are coming to Arizona then tint the persons car windows. It's amazing how much of a difference it will make.

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