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Surgery spots go unfilled

Discussion in 'Pre-Medical - MD' started by Toejam, May 23, 2002.

  1. Toejam

    Toejam Terminal Student
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    I'm sure a lot of you guys are familiar with the problem that general surgery residencies are having in filling their available spots. I read recently that about 25% of all positions went unfilled last year. Wow! It wasn't too long ago that these were the most sought after residencies (after all, you can't be a plastic surgeon without doing a general surg residency).

    What's the thinking out there about spending 5+ grueling years in a no-sleep, constant-call residency?
     
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  3. Assassin

    Assassin Assassin
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    </font><blockquote><font size="1" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">quote:</font><hr /><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">Originally posted by Toejam:
    <strong>What's the thinking out there about spending 5+ grueling years in a no-sleep, constant-call residency?</strong></font><hr /></blockquote><font size="2" face="Verdana, Helvetica, sans-serif">the thinking is: thank you, but no thank you :)
    I love medicine, but I love sleep even more <img border="0" alt="[Laughy]" title="" src="graemlins/laughy.gif" />
     
  4. none

    none 1K Member
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    Certain areas of surgery are nearly the most competitive spots, but the majority of surgery...well, it's just not a fun lifestyle.
     
  5. WISC-ite

    WISC-ite Senior Member
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    I think in general less people are going into general surgery (more are becoming specialized). The reason being that all the other subspecialties are getting in on the general surgeons turf. There are only a few things that are left solely to general surgeons these days (hemorrhoids and hernias). Other procedures that brings in good money are being taken by other non-surgery fields.

    An example is colonoscopy. This procedure was the big money maker for general surgeons originally, but now everyone does them - internists with a GI fellowship and even family practitioners if they seek the extra training. Another is hand surgery. Back in the day a general surgeon operated everything....now that everything is being shared.

    I think the life style is just not as rewarding as it once was. The finance is not there and the prestige is less. People are now choosing lifestyle first.
     
  6. Diogenes

    Diogenes Succat
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    I heard a theory about this phenomenon:

    In the past, medical schools accepted more competetive personalities (associated with surgeons -- think Dr. Romano on ER). But matching became a serious problem because everyone wanted surgery or other competetive specialties and too few people went into internal medicine. So the med schools started looking for compassionate rather than competetive personalities and the pendulum has swung too far.

    I personally think it is because the residencies take longer and people of my generation are less patient or less willing to slave away for 7 years while getting paid jack squat, especially when the ultimate reward is less money and more work than in the past (at least, that is what is perceived to be the case).

    I dunno.
     
  7. swimr

    swimr Junior Member
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    You're all right. From what I've heard, not only is the pay less than $5/hr, you have to deal with attendings who feel that you, the resident, should also go through the same pain in residency as him/her. If you're not supported by your attendings, who can you get support from in times of such torture?
     
  8. Toejam

    Toejam Terminal Student
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    I also read that there might be a g surg shortage in the future!

    I did a podiatry residency and rotated through a couple of services that were under the general surgery umbrella. I can tell you that I almost collapsed just from the one month that I had to do! Especially vascular surgery. It was a total, sleepless nightmare! I can hardly imagine doing it for 5+ years!! Ortho was tough, too. I think, though, they felt that it wasn't as bad as general surgery.
     
  9. Toejam

    Toejam Terminal Student
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    I also read that there might be a g surg shortage in the future!

    I did a podiatry residency and rotated through a couple of services that were under the general surgery umbrella. I can tell you that I almost collapsed just from the one month that I had to do! Especially vascular surgery. It was a total, sleepless nightmare! I can hardly imagine doing it for 5+ years!! Ortho was tough, too. I think, though, they felt that it wasn't as bad as general surgery.
     
  10. Toejam

    Toejam Terminal Student
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    I also read that there might be a g surg shortage in the future!

    I did a podiatry residency and rotated through a couple of services that were under the general surgery umbrella. I can tell you that I almost collapsed just from the one month that I had to do! Especially vascular surgery. It was a total, sleepless nightmare! :mad: I can hardly imagine doing it for 5+ years!! Ortho was tough, too. I think, though, they felt that it wasn't as bad as general surgery.
     
  11. TheThroat

    TheThroat SDN Moderator
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    As a first year resident at the University of Iowa, I have to disagree that surgery is a diminishing field. It is still the gateway to a number of fellowships (surg onc, laparoscopic surg, cardiothoracic, pedi surg), and g-surg, in many areas, can be a very lucrative career. That said, residents do have long hours, but that is also improving. Interns here have a number of rotations where we have call from home (Vascular and Peds surg). To sum up, g-surg, while difficult, is a great career choice for people who want to operate.

    Oh, and this is from someone going into Oto.
     

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