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US-IMG's chances in ENT

spinetime

undecided.
10+ Year Member
Jan 22, 2007
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  1. Medical Student
    Hey everyone,

    I'm kind of a n00b to sdn (more a reader than a poster), and I'm sure this topic has been discussed ad nauseum, but I couldn't find anything via the search function. So, here goes:

    I am a 4th year med student (in a 5 year program) in a medical college in South Asia. I am originally from the US, and therefore have no visa issues. I recently began my ENT rotation here at my college, and found the discipline to be awesome...I want to possibly pursue a career in the field, but I know it is extremely competitive.
    I have completed research in a major California University in the dept. of Anesthesia, and plan on doing away electives at top tier schools. I also plan on more research (possibly in ENT depending on the outcome of this thread). So my question is, with appropriate USMLE scores (high 90s), would someone in my situation even be considered for ENT? I appreciate blunt honesty, since I'm wondering if it's reasonably possible (I already know that ANYTHING is possible, so I don't need to hear that). Thanks in advance.
     

    resxn

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    Oct 2, 2006
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    1. Attending Physician
      Hey everyone,

      I'm kind of a n00b to sdn (more a reader than a poster), and I'm sure this topic has been discussed ad nauseum, but I couldn't find anything via the search function. So, here goes:

      I am a 4th year med student (in a 5 year program) in a medical college in South Asia. I am originally from the US, and therefore have no visa issues. I recently began my ENT rotation here at my college, and found the discipline to be awesome...I want to possibly pursue a career in the field, but I know it is extremely competitive.
      I have completed research in a major California University in the dept. of Anesthesia, and plan on doing away electives at top tier schools. I also plan on more research (possibly in ENT depending on the outcome of this thread). So my question is, with appropriate USMLE scores (high 90s), would someone in my situation even be considered for ENT? I appreciate blunt honesty, since I'm wondering if it's reasonably possible (I already know that ANYTHING is possible, so I don't need to hear that). Thanks in advance.

      It's very hard to get into ENT in the US as a IMG, no doubt. If you have solid research, solid USMLE's (I don't know what you mean by high 90's, but many ENT applicants have scores >245), and some connections you do stand a chance. It never hurts to apply, but unless your CV is absolutely smoking I wouldn't bank on very many interviews.

      In my program, we did have one IMG from Easter Europe. She, however, made it quite obvious to the program that they wouldn't take a flier on any other IMG's ever again. It's too bad, though, because I'm sure their are exceptional candidates that would certainly enhance the program if they were given the chance. It just doesn't seem to happen much these days.
       

      spinetime

      undecided.
      10+ Year Member
      Jan 22, 2007
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      1. Medical Student
        resxn,

        thanks for the reply. on this side of the world, people tend to talk about USMLE scores based on the double-digit score (where 99 is the highest). I'm not positive, but I think a 99 correlates to a certain range of three digit scores (e.g. 250-300...those numbers are totally made up btw). In any case, thanks for letting me down softly. I'll still throw it into my bag of options.
         
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        resxn

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        Oct 2, 2006
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        1. Attending Physician
          resxn,

          thanks for the reply. on this side of the world, people tend to talk about USMLE scores based on the double-digit score (where 99 is the highest). I'm not positive, but I think a 99 correlates to a certain range of three digit scores (e.g. 250-300...those numbers are totally made up btw). In any case, thanks for letting me down softly. I'll still throw it into my bag of options.

          Don't get me wrong, I think it's always worth pursuing doing what you really want to do. I just would remain cautiously optimistic. When I applied, I hoped for the best and planned for the worst just because I wasn't even sure I'd match.
           

          alekhine

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          Feb 19, 2007
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            In my program, we did have one IMG from Easter Europe. She, however, made it quite obvious to the program that they wouldn't take a flier on any other IMG's ever again.
            resxn ...can u elaborate more please? where did she go wrong? what happened to her? why did ur program take her in the first place?what were her credentials?
            sorry ....many questions
            just trying to learn from someone else's mistakes
             

            driedcaribou

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            Oct 18, 2003
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            1. Resident [Any Field]
              I have completed research in a major California University in the dept. of Anesthesia, and plan on doing away electives at top tier schools. I also plan on more research (possibly in ENT depending on the outcome of this thread). So my question is, with appropriate USMLE scores (high 90s), would someone in my situation even be considered for ENT? .

              Doable - if you can get good scores, you will need to make sure you can get solid reference letters and really impress a lot of the right people.

              Your away rotations can make or break you. The alternative is to do research in ENT with some well known names.
               

              resxn

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              Oct 2, 2006
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                resxn ...can u elaborate more please? where did she go wrong? what happened to her? why did ur program take her in the first place?what were her credentials?
                sorry ....many questions
                just trying to learn from someone else's mistakes

                Sorry to respond so late. I apologize.

                She was taken when there was an opening after one intern dropped out for anesthesia. Her chair called our chair and brokered the deal.

                She went wrong in that she was stubborn in that she couldn't work well in a team. She was selfish--when she was a senior resident she hogged cases. For example she was my chief at our University Hospital when I was a 4th year. During that time she took every otology (beyond t-plasty) and every revision rhinology case. I think I got in on 1 acoustic case and 2 sinus surgeries that rotation because of her. The 3rd year got jack. However, all of us became really good H&N surgeons those 4 months. In fact, I did 6 craniofacial resections during that time, so although I didn't eat where I wanted, I ate well. The attendings saw her selfishness and what it did to the team morale and it hurt her more than us.

                On rounds, she wasn't able to answer the questions she should have about the patients. Our R-3 was much more prepared to present patients than was she. I lived by a rule that the chief should know everything on a service at all times about every patient but only but in on the juniors when needed or when asked by the attending. She lived by the rule that she was the chief and the juniors should do everything and only bother her with stuff they couldn't figure out. That hurt her as well with attendings and her residents.

                Her credentials were an MD from an Eastern European country.
                 

                driedcaribou

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                  Sorry to respond so late. I apologize.

                  She was taken when there was an opening after one intern dropped out for anesthesia. Her chair called our chair and brokered the deal.

                  .

                  Thanks for sharing the story!

                  One question: Who was her chair and what program was she in before?

                  What's the best way to find opening in programs?
                   

                  resxn

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                  Oct 2, 2006
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                  1. Attending Physician
                    Thanks for sharing the story!

                    One question: Who was her chair and what program was she in before?

                    What's the best way to find opening in programs?

                    I don't know who her chair was--some guy in Europe.

                    One of the better ways to find which programs have openings is with the match. I'm not sure what the best way to find openings after the R-1 year is to be honest. I'm sure there is some repository of that information somewhere because it happens more frequently than we'd like it to.
                     

                    driedcaribou

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                      I don't know who her chair was--some guy in Europe.

                      One of the better ways to find which programs have openings is with the match. I'm not sure what the best way to find openings after the R-1 year is to be honest. I'm sure there is some repository of that information somewhere because it happens more frequently than we'd like it to.

                      Thanks for the tips. I'm assuming you're in ENT?

                      All these variables... all these unknowns...
                       

                      TheThroat

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                      1. Attending Physician
                        IMG's have a really hard time getting into to US oto programs, mainly bc/ there are so many good US applicants (high scores, research, etc). If you have good scores and some serious research, go ahead and apply. Just don't stroll into the interviews thinking you've got it made.
                         
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