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Value of Shadowing hours?

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mitch8017

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So I have done roughly 40 hours of shadowing between 2 specialties I am interested in and I wonder if I need to make a big push to do more? I apply next cycle and I am wondering if it is that significant of a difference to have 100-150 shadowing hours vs like 60? Also would it benefit me more to look into different specialties (say add 3-4 more) or just stick to what I've seen so far? I am not necessarily interested in the other specialties but i am wondering if it is worth my time to "broaden my horizon" on those so to speak when I could be spending those hours doing other things?
 

DrMikeP

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Do you have good LORs? Can you discuss your experience in secondaries and how it applies to becoming an MD or DO?

It really varies by school. A lot depends on your work experiences as well. If you are going DO then you want some DO hours.

Some just want enough for you to be able to say you know what you're getting into.

I know some schools like over 50. I don't know of any that say they want 150 or more and at some point there is a diminishing return but I've never seen any official research into that.
 
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CyrilFiggis

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What are your general medical volunteering hour like? I applied with zero shadowing hours but over 1000+ hours of direct patient interaction ranging from ER, Ortho, NICU, L&D and MICU. It's less about observing how to reduce a navicular subluxation and more about meaningful interactions with patients and understanding the day-to-day of a medical professional.
 

QofQuimica

Seriously, dude, I think you're overreacting....
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"Enough" is a subjective thing. I would say that if you 1) can write a PS using detailed examples from encounters you've witnessed while shadowing, and 2) have gotten to know a doc well enough to get a strong LOR from him or her, then you likely have shadowed "enough." If not, then keep shadowing until both of the above two criteria are met.
 
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