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erythema

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Hello.

I am in third year of medical school on my clinical rotations. I am getting mostly High Passes but not Honors and my boards scores are average. In the past, I have always wanted dermatology. I worked in a dermatology office for 7 years since I turned 15. Every rotation, I keep thinking that hopefully I will like it more than derm and unfortunately this is not happening. I work extremely hard but I am not so good at taking tests and I am scared this will hurt my chances of getting interviews.

Does anyone know if there are programs you could do after medical school that could help your chances of getting into dermatology residency? Does anyone have advice on this matter in general? Can you do a general medicine or pediatrics residency and then a dermatology residency after?

Your input would be greatly appreciated. Thank you.
 

potato51

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I'm not even in medical school yet, but I can partially answer your question since I work with dermatologists. Several of them have done internal medicine residencies prior to their derm programs. They've told me they couldn't initially match into derm, but doing IM anyway gives you an edge for derm residencies as it shows your maturity as a clinician and better ability to understand what's going systemically with derm patients (don't even know if that's true though).

Other dermatologists I've known did a year-long fellowship in a derm program and tried to match for a derm residency afterward. All three of the fellows I knew ended up matching the next year. I hear it depends heavily on the doctor for whom you are working though. You should look into these opportunities if possible. Good luck.
 

ny skindoc

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potato51 said:
I'm not even in medical school yet, but I can partially answer your question since I work with dermatologists. Several of them have done internal medicine residencies prior to their derm programs. They've told me they couldn't initially match into derm, but doing IM anyway gives you an edge for derm residencies as it shows your maturity as a clinician and better ability to understand what's going systemically with derm patients (don't even know if that's true though).

Other dermatologists I've known did a year-long fellowship in a derm program and tried to match for a derm residency afterward. All three of the fellows I knew ended up matching the next year. I hear it depends heavily on the doctor for whom you are working though. You should look into these opportunities if possible. Good luck.
In the past it was possible to enter Derm after doing another residency but due to funding issues it is less common.Do not count on this route.Spending a year (or two sometimes) doing a research fellowship after internship at an institution that you are interested in is most likely to help you.
 
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potato51

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ny skindoc said:
In the past it was possible to enter Derm after doing another residency but due to funding issues it is less common.Do not count on this route.Spending a year (or two sometimes) doing a research fellowship after internship at an institution that you are interested in is most likely to help you.
You're right. I think funding ends after what, PGY-5?

A clinical research fellowship is probably the best way to go, but find a doc with a great record of matching his/her fellows!
 

toxic-megacolon

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potato51 said:
You're right. I think funding ends after what, PGY-5?

A clinical research fellowship is probably the best way to go, but find a doc with a great record of matching his/her fellows!

Its much harder (like it isn't hard enough already) to get into derm if you do an Internal Med residency first. If you initially match into internal med, your funding will end after PGY3, not 5.
 

darrvao777

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I would agree with all the rest. Don't give up yet!

If you can't get an interview/match, perhaps try research for a year (in the field of derm of course) and then reapply. After you exhaust all possibilities, then settle for a backup!

Of course, if your heart isn't completely set on derm then it wouldn't hurt to look around for alternatives. But if this is something you really want, I'd give it a shot at least. If not two :)
 

scootad.

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It's easy to say, "dont give up" but this might not be the best realistic advice for you. Derm is extremely competitive. People with near perfect records often don't match. My sister ranked #1 in her top 40 med school, +AOA, 252 step 1, all honors and matched her #6. At her interviews she was surrounded by MdPhds.

I would re-evaluate your application, talk to an advisor, people from your school who applied. Consider cutting your losses. Are there other fields you might enjoy (anesth, path, rads, rehab?)?
 

darrvao777

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Ooh yea...I'd definitely talk to the school advisor and get his/her advice on this topic first.

As for the competitive nature of derm, I'd say that's just more incentive to stay committed.

No one ever fights for jobs that stink. You don't see people clamoring and competing to serve burgers and fries. If you're really passionate about it, stick with it. If your grades and board scores are low, find other ways to wow the admissions committee. Take a year off to do research. Knock em out at the interview. Or go for a PhD and come back and try again! haha
 

gary5

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Have you published in derm? I would expect it if you've known for so long. Definitely get advice from an advisor. One option would be to apply for derm and also apply for a backup specialty. Another option would be to apply only to derm and have a research fellowship be your backup plan, and then apply again. I'm all for people following their dreams, so I recommend keeping the vision but make sure that your backup plan is solid and that you could live with that option.
 

megsMS

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I think I've heard of this before but is it a real possibility? If you are willing to pay your own malpractice and forego a salary, would this convince some programs?
 
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