Prelim And Categorical??!

Discussion in 'Anesthesiology' started by foodcoma, Jul 23, 2006.

  1. foodcoma

    foodcoma Member
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    So I've just been advised from my career guidance to apply to prelim positions (for gas) as well as a categorical year in medicine just in case I'm not able to get my anesthesia. What sounds even more confusing to me, is that I will therefore be applying to the same hospital's pre-lim program as well as their categorical program, and will be interviewed for both on the same day. Any one have any thoughts on this? Is this a good idea? I feel that PDs are less like to take me for EITHER just because I'm applying for both. Need advice from anyone who's done this before!
    Thanks
     
  2. DreamMachine

    DreamMachine Porn$tar
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  3. Breezee

    Breezee Member
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    You have to decide what is more important to you. Getting an anesthesiology spot or getting a spot period. If your worse case scenario occurs (i.e. not matching in anesthesiology) and you match into a categorical medicine spot, will you be happy doing medicine or ready to go through all the hoorah of trying to get out of the matched position when something in anesthesiology comes up? I was given the same advice, and I chose not to apply for categorical medicine. I did preliminary medicine spots for backup, which would have only given me a one year-long position with, IMO, a better chance of getting a PGY2 position later or spot outside of the match if necessary. Hopefully you match and won't have to worry about all of that. Good luck. :thumbup:
     
  4. bubalus

    bubalus Member
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    Many programs have 1 or 2 CA1 spots for people to come in outside the match. So you if you don't match, you can do a prelim medicine year and then get one of these spots. They're not highly advertised, so you have to go looking for them. Plenty of posts about this.

    A prelim medicine year would also give you the option of staying on for the next 2 years in medicine if you really wanted to do that. I could have easily changed from prelim medicine to categorical, and actually had plenty of medicine attendings encourage me to do that.

    Bottom line: Apply for lots of anesthesia programs. Apply for a prelim medicine as a backup. If you don't match in anesthesia, send out a CV and cover letter during your intern year while you reapply through ERAS. If you get a spot outside the match--congrats. If you get a spot through the match, you'll have a year off. Doc in the box and some podunk ER and make somme $$ before starting anesthesia.
     
  5. cubs3canes

    cubs3canes Senior Member
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    This is good advice. I would apply to what you want and do not rank something that you do not want to do.

    In fact, I would not even rank prelim medicine on my primary list. If you do not match into gas, then scramble for a prelim spot. There are plenty all over the country and you do not want to be stuck in something if you have an opportunity to scramble.
     
  6. bubalus

    bubalus Member
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    That is also very good advice. If you would rather not match than do a malignant prelim year, don't put them on your rank list.

    My view on prelim spots is that ranking them gives you a little more control over type of program and location, but matching into a prelim spot but not anesthesia may very well make you ineligible for any categorical anesthesia spots that are available in the scramble. You'd have to check with those in the know to see if NRMP and a prelim program would release you so you could take a categorical spot. It's all a big crap shoot. You pay your money, roll the dice, and hope for the best.
     
  7. jennyboo

    jennyboo Senior Member
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    This is okay. Remember that most people need to apply for internships if they want to apply for anesthesia residencies anyway. You can interview at both -- at the prelim, they'll expect you to be applying for a residency. ;-)
     
  8. foodcoma

    foodcoma Member
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    thanks for all the great advice, guys! really, some food for thought (and not just cuz i'm hungry!).

    are most of the anesthesia programs out there 4 yr or 3yr? b/c if most are 3 year, then def i'll apply for pre-lim medicine.

    my residency coordinator keeps pushing me to apply for categorical medicine too just to ensure i'll get a JOB NEXT YR even tho I'm a pretty strong candidate. If i match categorical medicine, and match into a 4 yr anesthesia spot AND match into pre-lim I think i'll have some MAJOR explaining to do to the NMRP/the programs, and this is wat I'm really worried about. Is it hard to back out of the pgrms we match into with the NMRP? I hate that my school is more worried about their stats than about whether the student gets into a program they want.

    anyways, good advice is always appreciated.
     
  9. smgilles

    smgilles Senior Member
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    How are you going to match into categorical medicine and catergorical anesthesia at the same time? You will match into which program was higher on your rank list. Or am I crazy here... :confused:
     
  10. bubalus

    bubalus Member
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    You can't match into 2 categorical programs. When you list a categorical program on your rank order list (ROL) that's it for that position. When you list an advanced position (3 year anesthesia) it brings up a secondary list for you to rank your prelim programs.

    If you list all your anesthesia programs then list a prelim medicine program or a transitional year program as an invidual entry and don't match into an anesthesia program, you may match in to one of those prelim programs you listed. That would give you a job for the following year, but not thereafter.

    I probably wouldn't rank a categorical medicine program if you had no intention of doing it. As for ranking a prelim year at the end of your rank list, that's up to you and was discussed above.
     

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