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Senior Member
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Oct 25, 2002
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Intern year is winding down and I suppose anesthesia would be a good time to take care of this. Anybody take it yet? Did you subscribe to the #2 pencil addage? Is it enough to just do a few of the sample cases and refresh on OB and Peds a little? The Step III forum has some posts that make me think they're studying more like I did for step I; I'd think inservice and daily life in the ED would be decent prep for the test. Any insight?


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Jun 11, 2000
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I took Step 3 back in September and it was very, very easy. I don't even want to think how easy it would be after a year of EM. That said, I would go through the practice CD and take a look at the questions and the format of the simulated cases. The cases were actually pretty fun and very straightforward, but you have to know how to run them in order to do well. If you want something to read, I would recommend "Crush the Boards: Step 3." It gives you all the Peds and OB/GYN info you need and touches on some of the subspecialty stuff we don't see everyday. By far the best recommendation I can make is to take it as soon as possible and be done with it!

Good luck.


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Sep 11, 2003
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Only one of my residency classmates studied for Step III (the most anal-retentive one, IIRC) that I know of. Even that one regretted spending so much time studying for it afterwards.

IMHO, studying for Step III is a complete waste of time if you're an EM intern.
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Que Sera Sera
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Jun 13, 2003
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I gave and passed the Step III sometime back, and I'm not even an intern yet... i did not bother studying for it at all... but I would only suggest that u understand the CCS software really well, as that is the only tricky part to the exam. Otherwise, its one of those exams you can't really study for..

That said, I have a question of my own. How important are the Step III scores as far as getting into a fellowship program is concerned? I have heard quite a few rumors in this regard...


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Oct 1, 2002
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I just took Step III today and yesterday, and I think that while it's probably possible to pass it, a little refreshing wouldn't hurt. I spent the last month or so reading and doing questions for it, and a lot of the things I read came up there. The CCS sections were probably my favorite part. I was afraid they were gonna come at me with off the wall things like Li-Fraumeni Syndrome or something, but it was all bread and butter stuff. Just be ready to do your preventive care things that we as EM people don't always remember.
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