fldhkybnva

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May 18, 2006
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hi! do most applicants in pathology do any form of sub-i? there aren't really any sub-i opportunities in pathology itself, but i've heard of applicants doing a sub-i in either medicine or surgery. i talked to the program director at my school and he does not feel it is necessary, but that's just one program. i thought i'd find out what people think the consensus is at other places because i would love to devote the time to other rotations that i might not experience once medical school is over.
 
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JPmamd09

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May 18, 2008
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My medical school also had sub-i requirements. We had to do one medically-oriented sub-i and one surgically oriented sub-i. My program director (who ended up being an advisor of sorts while I was applying to programs) said that he liked to see well-rounded applicants who'd done well in path electives as well as in other unrelated rotations, especially the rigorous ones like sub-is.
 
Sep 6, 2009
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I treated my surg path elective like a sub-I, did it early and got letters of rec then. Follwing that, I got an externship, and some related rotations (but no subIs) done before interview season.

I did a sub-I later (post interviews) and in an unrelated fields to satisfy the graduation req. Actually, I have been doing grad reqs since Jan. We have several.

My logic was that I wanted to get as much exposure and experience in path as possible before the interviews. I had previous years, outside interests, ect to show well - roundedness. As to working hard, I hope that was mentioned in my LORs. Also, one of them came from my 3rd year medicine rotation.
 
Oct 28, 2009
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I'm gonna add that doing a CP rotation will be helpful too, more for your benefits than anything (If General CP rotation's not available, something like a Blood Bank Rotation will be good too). Especially if you're not sure if you wanna do AP-only or AP/CP.

A Pathology Sub-I is not available at my school, but I just did one AP and one CP rotations instead. For your Sub-I, I think Medicine is helpful, but of course some people feel that Surgery is more relevant (I personally don't like Surgery very much). As for electives, I think GI and Hem/Onc (Both fall under Medicine) are good too. For Heme, your team may do Blood smear/bone marrow rounds with the Hematopathologist as well. SOme people also said that Derm's good because of easy hours and again they have Dermatopathology rounds.
 

Euchromatin

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Oct 15, 2009
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I did my sub-i well after the interview season was finished and felt it was a colossal waste of my time, particularly since pathology residency does not require an intern year. My med school gave us the choice of medicine, peds, or surgery. I did IM simply because the hours were a little better.

You certainly don't need a sub-i done to be a competitive pathology applicant, and if your medical school doesn't require one at all, consider yourself lucky.

In terms of what rotations/electives to do during fourth year, you have many options. I did several pathology electives, including a CP month I set up on my own with a local esoteric testing facility and a research month, which were both fantastic. I personally tried to do as many pathology electives as possible, and as early in the year as I could schedule them (and perform well enough on them to get LORs). As other posters have mentioned, doing heme/onc, derm, GI, or a surgical service that generates lots of frozens and other specimens (i.e. transplant) is certainly an option. Or you could do something that you find interesting, even if it isn't path related, so you could have the experience before med school is over. Frankly, as long as your test scores are good and you have some decent LORs from pathologists, I got the impression that program directors don't really care all that much which elective clerkships you choose to do.
 
Oct 28, 2009
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I got the impression that program directors don't really care all that much which elective clerkships you choose to do.
Agree, I think as long as you show yourself as a mature person who has given thoughts to your specialty choice, get good LOR's, it doesn't matter as much whether what specific or how many path rotations you have done. At one of my interviews at a great program, a resident told me that he made the decision to apply for path around Oct/Nov during 4th year, when he was doing a path elective. My guess is that was his only path rotation before interview time and he still matched just fine.