|Authors||O'Herrin JK, Lewis BJ, Rikkers LF, Chen H|
|Journal||Am. J. Surg. Volume: 186 Issue: 2 Pages: 125-8|
|Publish Date||2003 Aug|
Interest in general surgical residencies has decreased significantly. Because medical student clerkship experiences may affect specialty preferences, we attempted to determine if the degree of exposure to surgical procedures influenced career choices.Operations observed by students who completed the third-year surgical clerkship between 1998 and 1999 were reviewed. These 146 medical students, who matched to residency training programs in March 2000, were then divided into three groups based upon residency fields. Surgical case exposures were then compared between the groups.The total number of operations observed was similar between the groups. However, students who matched into categorical general surgical programs participated in significantly more abdominal and general surgical procedures than those matching in surgical subspecialty or nonsurgical residencies (P < 0.01).There appears to be a correlation between surgical case exposure during the third-year clerkships and future residency fields. Thus, the degree of exposure to surgical procedures may influence medical student career choices.