What if I can't get into cardiology after IM?

Discussion in 'Internal Medicine and IM Subspecialties' started by blaze1306, Dec 8, 2005.

  1. blaze1306

    blaze1306 "I have a Dream....."
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    I would love to got into cardiology. I'm scared that if I go into IM residency how competitive do I have to be to get into a cardiology fellowship? Are there any linked IM and Cardio programs. My worst fear is to go into an IM residency and get denied at every cardio residency, then I'm screwed does this happen?
     
  2. skypilot

    skypilot 2K Member
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    How about working as a hospitalist for a few years and paying off your med school loans then reapplying to Cardio?

    I know one woman who waited 15 years and then did a GI fellowship.
     
  3. inositide

    inositide Senior Member
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    You can do research.
     
  4. blaze1306

    blaze1306 "I have a Dream....."
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    I'm already a non-trad (33) by the time i'm ready for residency I don't want to waste anymore time. I want to work everyday doing what I've always dreamed of doing. Being a cardiologist would be the culmination of a dream. I never considered it because I thought the residency was to long, but after a long conversation with my wife cardiology at 6 years total is not that bad. Are there any linked programs with IM and Cardio?
     
  5. daelroy

    daelroy Senior Member
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    Make sure you shine in your residency so that you can be nominated to do a year as chief resident. Usually the chief residents get a spot if they failed to secure the fellowship the first time.
     
  6. blaze1306

    blaze1306 "I have a Dream....."
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    So there is no such thing as a linked IM/cardio program?
     
  7. skypilot

    skypilot 2K Member
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    You're still a youngster. :)
     
  8. inositide

    inositide Senior Member
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    yes there are some combined programs which end up saving a year total.
     
  9. dukeblue01

    dukeblue01 Senior Member
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    There are combined programs, but usually they are short tracks, intended for MD/PhDs and others who have done a substantial amount of research already and can sacrifice 1 year of clincal IM for another year of research in fellowship. Be advised that you will probably have to do some research in order to be competetive for cardiology. I don't know your history, and maybe you already have tons. Being a chief is another way to secure a position, but I would also say if you can get into a top tier IM program, Cards becomes an easier match. Also, there are some, not all, Cards programs that are going to a 4 year format that can be used for more research or an EP or Interventional Fellowship as the last year.
    I am only a 4th year MS who is looking at Cards, so maybe some of the Cardiology fellows on this board can offer more well informed advice.

    PS - I admire your devotion to Cardiology, but remember that you have to finish 3 years of general medicine first and then Cards is mostly medicine plus some very cool procedures. So I would say you must LOVE medicine to go into Cards or you risk suffering for most of your years of training.
     
  10. irlandesa

    irlandesa Senior Member
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    my impression is that getting into cardiology requires a lot of the same thought process and intense planning that getting into medical school did.. Being sure to get research experience, getting a good advisor/advocate from your residency program, and applying to a LOT of programs definitely increases your chances.. From talking to attendings and residents here, it seems that the following things are detrimental: 1)no research experience whatsoever, 2)failure to go on enough interviews or consider enough places, 3)going to a residency program with no cardiology fellowship and/or limited national reputation (the former of the 2 is a huge strike), and 4)osteopathic applicants (alas, still prejudice come fellowship time).

    I'm starting to really like Cards and am considering it; the chair of Cards here told me to come to him right away when I knew and was very encouraging (even though my record isn't that hot). So when you choose a residency program, I would look for one with a very supportive and proactive PD and Cards chairman who are willing to help you in any way possible. I have a friend in a program who is getting terrible advice and is applying too early (to about 60+ programs) with almost no research experience b/c an advisor thinks it is "time" for him to apply regardless (he is also an FMG). He says he knows he will not match, and unfortunately, I fear he is right.
     
  11. Heme/Onc

    Heme/Onc Member
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    Shut up about the DO thing......There are plenty of DOs who are cardiologists! Many of the people on this board need to get a life.
     
  12. irlandesa

    irlandesa Senior Member
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    If there are so many DO cardiologists, then why do I not know any? Granted, I'm training in the Northeast, which is less DO friendly than the Midwest, but anyone who thinks it is just as easy for DO's to get a fellowship position in Cards as MD's has their head impacted up near the hepatic flexure. I know many DO residents and some attendings who are excellent doctors, and personally think the perceived difference is generally stupid, but to fool DO students or students-to-be into thinking that residency and fellowship will present absolutely NO difficulties come residency and fellowship time is just irresponsible and dishonest. Some residency programs and fellowship programs (particularly in the very competitive fields) will not even interview DO's, even when they are great.. Maybe there are some cards fellowships at osteopathic hospitals that you might be so kind to inform applicants of to prove me wrong and reassure your colleagues, instead of regurgitating the usual "get a life" BS.

    BTW, we did have 2 DO residents from here who matched in Cards, but one did her whole last 2 years of med school at a top 50 US school and had significant family connections to the place where she matched (also did her residency there). The other did a chief resident year and won a whole bunch of teaching awards.
     
  13. glorytaker

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    What's so bad about doing just straight up IM? If I don't get into a fellowship or I chose not to, I'd be perfectly happy doing just medicine. I'm also going to be a DO so I'm insulted not at only the DO comment but also I feel insulted about just being IM.
     
  14. Anthony328

    Anthony328 Member
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    If you truly want to pursue Cards, this should have no effect on you.
    I too thought I wanted to go into a Cards fellowship although as years passed, I realized I was deluded. All the enthusiasm I had as I read the textbooks, reviewed ekgs wore off pretty quickly not long after I was handed the pager and put to work :eek: . All it took was a few CCU rotations(asa,ntg, bb, heparin, ?IIB/IIA?...cath lab...chest pain/high risk?...asa, bb,ntg, heparin..asa, bb, ntg, statin... chest pain-cath...chest pain-cath...chest pain...p-thal...chest pain..cath...chest pain...exercize treadmill...chest pain...chest pain...chest pain...ahhhhh! leave me alone ER!!! :smuggrin: ), rotating through outpatient cardiology clinics(yawn :sleep: ), observing many worn out private practice cardiologists(particularly the interventionalists) at our private hospital and realizing I would have to participate in quite a bit of research I had absolultely no desire to do, not to mention having to apply to 20+ programs for a decent chance of getting a fellowship. I was blessed to have the opportunity to do a few other electives during my intern year and early into second year which opened my mind to other opportunities out there....far removed from chest pain :D .
     

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