surgerical residency

anxietypeaker

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    just a few questions:

    1) Which are the least competitive surgical specialties out there?

    2) the americ college of surgeons say that there are always some gen surgery programs that are not matched...doesnt that mean its easy to get into "A" match with gen surgery?

    3) Now, the followup question is, why are these programs left unmatched. If you go to a poor gen surgery residency, what does that mean (ie you wont be able to work in certain areas)? keep in mind, working in academia is not of interest to me.

    Thanks
     

    robotsonic

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      I'm not an expert, but since I'm applying for surgery residency now and some of my friends are surgeons, I've heard a few things.

      1. For general surgery: Critical care/trauma fellowship is not competitive at all. Other non-competitive fellowships include colorectal and vascular. Peds is very competitive, along with surg onc. (Research is a must for peds surgery.)
      General surgery is less competitive than the other surgery residencies, like ortho (which is very competitive), plastics, and neurosurgery.

      2. There are not many categorical spots that go unmatched. I think it was about five total last year. So it is very difficult to scramble into a categorical spot. It is easy, though, to scramble into a prelim spot, but that usually means reapplying and doing intern year again once you get into a categorical position.
      About 80% of spots are filled by U.S. seniors, the rest by FMGs.
       
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      robotsonic

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        anxietypeaker said:
        what do you mean by categorical vs prelim?

        regardless, what percentile would you say you have to be to get into gen surg?

        Oh, sorry. Categorical means you are guaranteed a spot for the entire 5-year general surgery residency. Preliminary (prelim) spots are for those who are either going into another field (like ortho or anesthesia and need a year of general surg internship) or for those who did not get a categorical spot (went unmatched) and want to prove to a program that they can handle residency (so they do the surgery intern year and then try to reapply).

        General surgery is really not that competitive. If you are graduating from a med school in the U.S. and you are not at the very bottom of your class, you should be able to match into general surgery - maybe not at the top programs, but somewhere. As usual, the top programs are more competitive - these are usually the big academic centers. If you aren't interested in academics, and are more interested in doing residency in a community program, then it will be much easier to get a spot.

        Any other questions? :)
         

        Doc7

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          robotsonic said:
          Oh, sorry. Categorical means you are guaranteed a spot for the entire 5-year general surgery residency. Preliminary (prelim) spots are for those who are either going into another field (like ortho or anesthesia and need a year of general surg internship) or for those who did not get a categorical spot (went unmatched) and want to prove to a program that they can handle residency (so they do the surgery intern year and then try to reapply).

          General surgery is really not that competitive. If you are graduating from a med school in the U.S. and you are not at the very bottom of your class, you should be able to match into general surgery - maybe not at the top programs, but somewhere. As usual, the top programs are more competitive - these are usually the big academic centers. If you aren't interested in academics, and are more interested in doing residency in a community program, then it will be much easier to get a spot.

          Any other questions? :)

          this is all good stuff, thanks. I do have a question, I am a first year and I think I want to go into surgery, what kinds of things should I be doing, besides doing well in school and boards, that residency programs like to see? Is clinical research as important for surgery residencies as it seems to be for other areas? thanks
           

          rockdoc

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            robotsonic said:
            Oh, sorry. Categorical means you are guaranteed a spot for the entire 5-year general surgery residency. Preliminary (prelim) spots are for those who are either going into another field (like ortho or anesthesia and need a year of general surg internship) or for those who did not get a categorical spot (went unmatched) and want to prove to a program that they can handle residency (so they do the surgery intern year and then try to reapply).

            General surgery is really not that competitive. If you are graduating from a med school in the U.S. and you are not at the very bottom of your class, you should be able to match into general surgery - maybe not at the top programs, but somewhere. As usual, the top programs are more competitive - these are usually the big academic centers. If you aren't interested in academics, and are more interested in doing residency in a community program, then it will be much easier to get a spot.

            Any other questions? :)
            Is there a way to find out which gen surg residency programs are somewhat less competitive?
             

            robotsonic

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              :) Ok, so you should probably go to the surgery forum under the residency section if you want to learn about surgery, but since someone asked...

              Doc7 said:
              this is all good stuff, thanks. I do have a question, I am a first year and I think I want to go into surgery, what kinds of things should I be doing, besides doing well in school and boards, that residency programs like to see? Is clinical research as important for surgery residencies as it seems to be for other areas? thanks

              Do research if you want. It's more important to do well in your courses and on the boards, but research will help with residency apps, especially at academic programs. You can do research in any area that seems interesting; don't worry if it turns out to not be in the area you eventually go into.
              And remember that you might not even like surgery once you actually do it.
               
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