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Helping to match path

Discussion in 'Pathology' started by MyNameIsOtto, Apr 15, 2007.

  1. MyNameIsOtto

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    Hey,

    Just an MS1 here but I already know clinical work isn't for me. I'm trying to think ahead and was wondering that if one doesn't match pathology during 4th year, would it be more helpful to do a post-doc of some sort for a year before reapplying or try to scramble into an internship and then reapply?
     
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  3. mlw03

    mlw03 Senior Member
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    Otto -
    relax dude. first off, why are you already worried you won't match into path? path is not rad onc - while it's getting somewhat more competitive, there are still far more spots than there are american seniors applying for them. second, do a search on this topic - it's been discussed extensively before. often the answer is that an internship isn't going to change your class rank, grades, or board scores, so aside from paying the bills for a year, it probably won't make you a more competitive pathology applicant. but again, i'm most curious why you're at the end of MS1 and you're already worried you won't match into path.
     
  4. MyNameIsOtto

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    hah...thanks, yeah I'll relax. It's not that I'm overly concerned that I wouldn't match but just that I've heard of the trend that it's getting more competitive.
     
  5. mlw03

    mlw03 Senior Member
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    i can appreciate your concern, really. i'm pretty uptight and anal myself, but your energies and efforts are far better spent just learning what you're supposed to at this point. take your classes, study, try and get an A in the second year path course (certainly not a requirement to match into path), and then study your butt off for a month and get the best score you can on step I. and after you do all that, re-evaluate and proceed with a lot more determined than is possible as an MSI.
     
  6. triguy

    triguy Use the Force
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    I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but if you don't like clinical medicine, then you should quit right now. I'm serious, it will not be worth it in the end. Even in pathology we take care of patients, and while we might not be as "hands on" as other specialties, the focus is still on the patient.

    You have only done one year of medical school, and while I'm sure you are already feeling the economic pressure of finishing so you can pay off this incredibly expensive education, that payoff is at least six years away, and your debt will only multiply each year.

    Being a doctor is not what you think it is (nobody really knows until they have been through it). Not necessarily bad, just different than a MS1's preconceived notion.

    If you don't like the subject, don't spend the rest of your life studying it. If you really love it, then it is a different story, but you sond like a gunner who just went into medicine "because it's there." If that is the case...get out now.
     
  7. Thaitanium

    Thaitanium Member
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    Talk about being harsh. You don't even know the poster. Just by judging based on 1 post, you are suggesting he/she quit medicine altogether? Talk about jumping the gun. Maybe if you probe him/her and ask why he/she doesn't like clinical medicine when he/she is ONLY a first year...that may get you some answers by which you might be able to "judge" his desire to be a doctor.

    Yes, I think the original poster has to do some thinking if he already dislikes clinical medicine as a first year. But to tell him to quit medicine...that's a little harsh.

    To the original poster: Things will get harder for you as you progress through medical school as the curriculum will progressively get more clinical. You are a MS1. How do you know pathology is even right for you. If you dont like clinical medicine, there are other routes too, like radiology...you can never decide what you want to do when u start out. Students change their minds several times before actually choosing a specialty.

    As a first year, disliking clinical medicine never came into my mind. I was more focused on doing well in the basic sciences. Maybe because I didn't have any clinical experience yet? Maybe the poster has some clinical experience before medical school?
     
  8. yaah

    yaah Boring
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    In general, one's impression of clinical medicine as a first year is distinctly different from what your impression will be by your graduation. Personally, I don't think anyone should be making strong decisions about their career path during 1st year of med school. Give it some time, explore, see what you like and what you don't like. You don't have to decide now.

    I also tend to wonder why you went to med school if you know you hate clinical medicine so much. Unless you already have a strong research background and know that's where you're going to be.
     
  9. CameronFrye

    CameronFrye Senior Member
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    I can't even imagine how horrible med school would've been if I had gone into it knowing that I wanted to do path. At least I went deep into 3rd year still wanting to do something procedural (some form of surgery or interventional rads).
     
  10. MyNameIsOtto

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    wow...Some of you guys literally are too funny.

    Ok, so maybe I did choose medicine for money and prestige. So what? I should have choose medicine to "help people"? Do all dentists become dentists to give the world "a cleaner smile"?

    I am at the top of my class and the material is pretty straight forward. I already know pathology is my field because I have previous experience and research in a path lab.

    My original question was, and still simply is, "is it better to do a post-doctoral fellowship or an internship if one doesn't match path during MS4?"

    I thought at least most path folks would have their heads out of their asses.
     
  11. Thaitanium

    Thaitanium Member
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    Otto-

    You know what? I actually was on your side buddy when I read someone telling you to quit medicine altogether. However, you do sound pretty darn arrogant.

    Anyways, if you are at the top of your class AND the material is pretty straightforward for you AND you have previous experience AND you did research in a Path lab...why are you worrying about not matching?

    So, that makes me wonder how a bright and talented person like yourself would even worry about matching into Path? I mean c'mon, Path is not Derm.
    I don't think someone with your qualifications has anything to worry about. Forget the internship. Forget the postdoc fellowship. I think you are ready for Mass General Path right now :laugh:. Yes, as a MS1.

    Kidding aside, let's be realistic. Let's think really hard now. 150 path programs....400+ spots...do some research...read old posts...path is not that competitive...you actually don't think you can get into a single Path program with your stellar performance? Plus, you have 3 more years to improve your application. Some ppl dont even know what they want to do yet as a MS1. Since you already know what you want to do....you got 3 YEARS to work on your application!

    P.S As a lowly MS1, learn to respect those ahead of you. Don't go around telling 3rd, 4th years, residents and attendings to pull their head out of their asses OK? Like an attending told me...respect begets respect. Remember that.
     
  12. pathfme30

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    I am not on Otto's side here, but I am curious why you are concerned whether a "lowly MS1" is respectful of those higher. I know that is a militarish side of medicine. However, (although I am interested in path) I spent alot of time in derm and some time in path. The folks were intense there and weren't so concerned about the hierarchy. I guess I don't understand how the hierarchy relates to this kid stating some arrogant things. Hierarchy seems to sometimes turn things malignant.



     
  13. Thaitanium

    Thaitanium Member
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    I didn't mean to sound hierarchal. I didn't mean it to sound that way.

    Anyways, to the OP. No one can tell you whether you will match. Since you are already planning on going into Path as a MS1, you will have no problems matching. Like I said, you have 2.5 years left to work on your application. Come back in two years after you have taken the boards and have finished clinicals.

    Good luck.
     
  14. b&ierstiefel

    b&ierstiefel Guest

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    I smell a tonka truck here.
     
  15. fun8stuff

    fun8stuff *hiding from patients*
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    Medicine IS hierarchal... i took the message as one to not diss the people above you because if you the piss the wrong guy off, they will make your life miserable. never a good idea to talk **** to someone who is ahead of you in process... i thought this was logical sense...:confused:
     
  16. Thaitanium

    Thaitanium Member
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    I think I need a Bierstiefel.
     
  17. yaah

    yaah Boring
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    Good for you for being at the top of your class. You sure showed us.

    The answer to your question is, surprise, "It depends." Everyone's goals are different. Since your goal is money and prestige, an MBA would probably be best, but a post-doc would be beneficial too. An internship would be wasteful.

    Do you really think pathologists are better at keeping their heads out of their asses than any other field? I'm sure as someone with vast experience you can be sure to enlighten us.

    The thing is, you do learn an awful lot between MS1 and residency. Even premeds who think they know everything will find that they learn a lot, not only about medicine, but about themselves and their own weakness, strengths, etc. But if you want to think you have most of the answers now and that you know what is best, go ahead. I certainly don't have answers I am still looking for, but one thing I do know is that if you are in medicine primarily for prestige and money it is going to be a rough, probably unhappy life.
     
  18. Villin

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    :sleep:

    i believe by your comments that you are indeed at the bottom of your class. In medicine for $$$ and prestige...and you chose pathology?! :thumbup:
     
  19. triguy

    triguy Use the Force
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    Wow, talk about walking into the lion's den. Just for the record, I do not advocate people quit medicine if they went into it for the right reasons. But I smelled a Dr. McGuillicuddy right away, and felt for the profession that it was best to thin the herd early. Otto, my point was, your life is going to suck for the next couple of years. Get ready for it. Also, I hope none of my family members ever run into you when they are in need of medical care.
     
  20. djmd

    djmd an Antediluvian
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    If you are at the top of your class there is almost no reason you wouldn't match in pathology.

    However, the points people have made about "hating clinical medicine" and knowing pathology is for you as an MSI are valid. The people who quit pathology residencies are almost universally those who "hate" clinical medicine. Obviously we like pathology more than clinical medicine, but as many people have said they didn't decide till later. So this is a bit of a red flag.

    Lastly, money and prestige?
    Please, I'll let LADoc rant about money and time spent how it doesn't pay out (you should just go get an MBA and do investment banking).

    Prestige? Oh yeah people FLOCK around pathologists. That's for sure.
    We never see patients (so no one thanks us)
    People don't know what we do (or think it is CSI)
    And even when the know what we do, there is little being impressed.
    "Oh you are a doctor? Have you ever brought someone back with paddles? Saved someone with surgery?"
    -No but once I made the right diagnosis and call the other doctor and then HE (point that go over there) did the right thing...
    "Oh great... That guy? uuh see you" *walks off*
    "Hey Dr. that guy so once you saved a life...?"
     
  21. MyNameIsOtto

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    Sorry if my last post sounded arrogant, that wasn't my intention. My intention simply was to suggest that I don't believe MS2, MS3 or MS4 will get "harder" for me simply because I already know I do not want to be involved in DIRECT patient contact.

    So, to clear it up - I didn't say I HATE clinical medicine. I just do not want to have DIRECT patient contact working in a clinical setting. I don't want to dive into a discussion of how I concluded this already and how I'll change my mind.

    Once again, I just wanted to seek the advice of some higher ups with more experience and insight.."ALL OTHER THINGS CONSIDERED EQUAL, WOULD YOU CONSIDER A POST-DOCTORAL FELLOWSHIP MORE HELPFUL THAN AN INTERNSHIP TO MATCH?"

    Instead of picking apart every word I wrote and writing me a thesis on my personality and motives in life, can anyone answer that one question? In fact, forget I even mentioned I'm a first year and just pretend that I am an MS4 that didn't match, if that makes it easier for you.
     
  22. 106174

    106174 Junior Member
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    I think that you could go either way. With a clinical internship, particularly in Surgery, PDs might view this as an asset in that you would somehow have a better understanding of Surgical Pathology. Or if you did Medicine, then you would have an edge in the Clinical Pathology rotations, particularly Transfusion Medicine. With a basic science post-doctoral fellowship, you could pad your CV with publications and that would be very good for re-applying and even for fellowships. Also, they might see that as a potential for you becoming an academic Pathologist which is always deemed good.

    Having said all that, however, you would need to come up with a very good reason for why you did not match to Pathology the first time around. I think that this would be the toughest hurdle you would have to overcome.
     
  23. schrute

    schrute RoyalCrownChinpokoMaster
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    Careful you don't fall into that hole...
     
  24. DarksideAllstar

    DarksideAllstar you can pay me in bud
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    Ask your questions again in 3 years :laugh:
     
  25. yaah

    yaah Boring
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    I don't really see the clinical internship being advantageous in any situation, unless you were to goof off and do nothing during the post doc. The internship will be hard work and while you will learn things that are relevant in path, one year of internship is not going to make you a better pathologist. If you do your residency at the same hospital, it will help you know the ins and outs of the institution and where things are located, etc, but that won't do much for your career.
     
  26. MyNameIsOtto

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    Thanks guys...
     
  27. djmd

    djmd an Antediluvian
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    I guess B, but NEITHER IS LIKELY TO BE NEEDED. More competitive means like Anes competitive (maybe not even that high). Not Derm, Otho, or even Uro or Rad competitive. (and now I don't know order those actually go in) If you are near the top of your class you should have little problem matching well.
     
  28. djmd

    djmd an Antediluvian
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    ECHO echo echo echo
     
  29. 106174

    106174 Junior Member
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    another advantage that doing an internship has over a post-doc fellowship is that you will get paid more.
     
  30. yaah

    yaah Boring
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    Yeah, but it's like getting paid more to be a waiter at Denny's as opposed to working at McDonalds.
     
  31. 106174

    106174 Junior Member
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    at least you'd have a job and the more you earn, the faster you'd get out of medical school debt. an intern, in most programs, will get paid roughly 44K next fiscal year. with all the NIH funding cuts going on, you would be lucky to get paid 30K as a post-doc fellow (without a PhD behind you).
     
  32. docbiohazard

    docbiohazard Highly ranked amateur
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    Have you considered Surgery? Something about your post screams surgeon to me... maybe Plastics?

    BH
     

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