Why is pediatric surgery so competitive?

Discussion in 'Surgery and Surgical Subspecialties' started by Toadkiller Dog, Jul 2, 2002.

  1. Toadkiller Dog

    Toadkiller Dog Senior Member
    7+ Year Member

    May 31, 2001
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    I don't get it--roughly the same lifestyle as a general surgeon, probably same pay, perhaps less even.

    So why do only the top surgery residents get peds spots? What makes it so attractive--reputation and respect?
  2. droliver

    Moderator Emeritus 10+ Year Member

    May 1, 2001
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    Attending Physician
    Truth is, Peds Surg is not nearly the most competative fellowship anymore. The low # of training spot (low 20's) has always inflated how competative it was a little. In recent years, the # of applicants has continued to fall to where its not much more than 1:1 for applicants to spots. Plastic Surgery is far & away the fellowship now with the tightest competition for spots (2:1+).
  3. sanfilippo

    sanfilippo El Gaucho Misterioso
    10+ Year Member

    Jun 4, 2002
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    i followed with a ped surgeon just a few days before taking my step one (i don't think it was a horrible decision). he said that it's competitive fellowship since there aren't many of them, just as the poster above has said. it's about 2 applicants per slot. however, there aren't many ped surgeons around, even in this large city of ChiTown. He had about 10 cases scheduled and wasn't going to leave till 9-10 PM at night. if there were more ped surgeons out there, his work load wouldn't be as heavy. also, he has to cover at another hospital nearby as well as take ER trauma calls at another university hospital. ped surgeons, on average, make less money than other surgical subspecialties.

    the bread and butter of ped surgery training is infants with cardiac defects, but it seems most of what he ends up doing in the "real world" is older child (5-12 range) operations for inguinal hernia repairs and GI stuff like gastroschisis, biliary atresia, pyloric stenosis and imperforate ani. Very few, if any, cardiac cases unless trauma is involved.

    go fig. still piqued my interest.

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