TexasMeds

5+ Year Member
Jun 20, 2014
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Medical Student
Im still an MS2 and i know that match is still some time away. Im extremely interest in ortho but I wouldnt mind doing general surgery at all for the rest of my life either (some of my family members are surgeons and I get a pretty good grasp on their lifestyles).

My question is, if my grades are borderline for matching ortho but I'd get a pretty good chancing of matching into a general surgery program somewhere in the country, should I just put my first choice as general surgery when the time comes? Just so that I dont lose the chance for both ortho AND gen if I listed ortho as first and gen as second.

Just a little worried because I'm just doing average in class (at UT Houston) and didnt get a chance to do research in the past summer.
 

Southplains

5+ Year Member
Jun 27, 2013
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Resident [Any Field]
Im still an MS2 and i know that match is still some time away. Im extremely interest in ortho but I wouldnt mind doing general surgery at all for the rest of my life either (some of my family members are surgeons and I get a pretty good grasp on their lifestyles).

My question is, if my grades are borderline for matching ortho but I'd get a pretty good chancing of matching into a general surgery program somewhere in the country, should I just put my first choice as general surgery when the time comes? Just so that I dont lose the chance for both ortho AND gen if I listed ortho as first and gen as second.

Just a little worried because I'm just doing average in class (at UT Houston) and didnt get a chance to do research in the past summer.
Look more into the way the match works if you're interested, but basically you wouldn't "lose the chance for both" because it doesn't work that way. You would never lose your spot at program B or C (if they ranked you to match) unless you matched into program A.

Also, during 3rd year I think you will choose one or the other because ortho and general surgery really only share the OR in common.
 
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ACSurgeon

Acute Care Surgeon
10+ Year Member
Jun 8, 2008
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Attending Physician
Look more into the way the match works if you're interested, but basically you wouldn't "lose the chance for both" because it doesn't work that way. You would never lose your spot at program B or C (if they ranked you to match) unless you matched into program A.

Also, during 3rd year I think you will choose one or the other because ortho and general surgery really only share the OR in common.
Yea but the way you set up your fourth year will make it obvious if you're applying to both or just one field. If you wanna do ortho, you'll have to do 2-3 ortho rotations at the beginning of 4th year. This leaves little time for general surgery sub-I, and general surgery programs will see that you spent so much time doing ortho always and rotations. This WILL impact how general surgery programs rank you. So the problem isn't with how the match algorithm works, it's the difficulty in building a strong application for two specialties.
 
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giantswing

7+ Year Member
Jan 12, 2010
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Start research now. Not too late.

Once you hit third year, figure out if you even like the OR. Then, if you like medical managment and stuff like heart sounds, then ortho isn't really for you.
 
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Jun 13, 2016
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3rd and early 4th year grades are the grades that matter so your grades aren't "borderline" they are basically not in existence yet which is ok! You may find yourself better clinically than you were at tests.

Keep an open mind about specialties going into 3rd year

Do you have research at all? It is pretty vital for ortho but less vital for other specialties so try to get in some ortho research. If you end up changing your mind and wanting to do pediatrics or something the pediatrics people won't mind its presence but the ortho people will mind it's abscence if that is what you choose