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Hello everyone!

 

This forum has been my go-to place for the "inside scoop" on all things med school/residency related for years now. I'm trying to learn more about the Urology programs in the country (outside of what they post on their websites), so naturally i came here.

Can anyone comment on:

which (if any) programs are considered malignant? are any programs particularly "bad"? where do the residents seem happiest? any other info/comments that could be helpful are greatly appreciated...

 

Thanks!

 

-tet

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Hi,

 

I don't know anything about urology programs, but my friend just finished a 2 week elective at Dal and apparently it's extremely well-organized. As part of the elective, the student is expected to have ~5 interviews with faculty/residents. He really enjoyed the elective and enjoyed working with the staff/residents.

 

The urology residents at the U of A all seem pretty happy and the staff I've met (only 4) seem really nice and relaxed.

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I am a current urology resident and have looked into (and worked in most of) all the English programs in Canada: Here is my nutshell evaluations from East to West:

Dal: Excellent Surgical Volume, good teaching, good pass rate, busy life

Ottawa: Good Surgical volume, good teaching, good pass rate, moderate lifestyle (fun group of staff)

Kingston: Lower surgical Volume, excellent teaching, excellent pass rate, excellent research opportunities, best lifestyle.

London: excellent surgical exposure. very busy. occasional problems with exams due to resident workload.

Toronto: Good surgical volume (bit lower due to many fellows) good teaching exellent research, quite busy.

Mac: exellent surgical volume-best lap experience in Canada, quite busy lifestyle. New program, but pass rates have been good

Winnipeg: good surgical volume-best endourology access, very good lifestyle, were having trouble with program, but new PD has improved it.

Edmonton: ++ surgical volume, very busy due to small amount of residents

Vancouver: Excellent volume, excellent teaching, excellent pass rate, good research. very busy lifestyle.

 

All Canadian programs tend to get residents good fellowships around the world, but I would say that Van, Toronto, and Kingston tend to have a small advantage due to big names.

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It is actually very competitive. But don't be fooled, it isn't because there are tons of people applying. It's more because there are only a few spots available.

 

So if you're applying through carms, you'll only be going up against a select few applicants.

 

Well, last year there were 80 IMG applicants for 2 spots (which were in reality only one spot since Ottawa had already decided not to take an IMG before the match).

 

1/80.... that's quite competitive.

For Canadian grads, I guess you have a 50/50 chance of matching...

 

Don't forget Uro/ENT/Ophth/Plastics are the surgical specialties with the best lifestyles... Not sure about Ortho, though...

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Well, last year there were 80 IMG applicants for 2 spots (which were in reality only one spot since Ottawa had already decided not to take an IMG before the match).

 

1/80.... that's quite competitive.

For Canadian grads, I guess you have a 50/50 chance of matching...

 

Don't forget Uro/ENT/Ophth/Plastics are the surgical specialties with the best lifestyles... Not sure about Ortho, though...

 

I would put ENT and Optho above Uro and Plastics though when it comes to lifestyle.

 

IMHO:

Best: ENT, Optho

Mid-level: Plastics, Vascular, CV, Urology, Neurosurg

Worst: Gen Surg, Ortho

 

The chance of a Canadian grad matching is probably closer to 70%, if you average it out over the past few years, rather than the crazy year that was 2010.

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I would put ENT and Optho above Uro and Plastics though when it comes to lifestyle.

 

IMHO:

Best: ENT, Optho

Mid-level: Plastics, Vascular, CV, Urology, Neurosurg

Worst: Gen Surg, Ortho

 

The chance of a Canadian grad matching is probably closer to 70%, if you average it out over the past few years, rather than the crazy year that was 2010.

 

I'll hand it to ENT and Optho... but I would never place Neurosurg as a "mid-level" surgical specialty, lifestyle-wise.

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Our metric for measuring lifestyle in surgical specialties is all wrong. We are doing it relative to all other surgical specialties. We should instead be doing it by seeing how lifestyle deviates from normal human circadian rhythms. Here's the list:

 

Normal lifestyle: oph

Bad hours with a lot of early mornings but not a lot of nights: ENT, uro, plastics, some vascular

Horrible hours - nights and mornings. Goodbye to your life: general, ortho, CV, the rest of vascular (you should just do int. rad. instead), and neuro (probably the worst)

 

When you say normal for ophthalmology, what do you consider normal? Some people would say 8-4 or 9-5 mon-fri with no call is normal.. i find it hard to believe that you can get this in surgery from what ive heard.. i could be totally wrong though, just a pre-med right now! So please fill me in with whatever info you know!

 

I am really interested in surgery, but family life and church involvement has been a huge part of my life growing up and i won't sacrifice that (within reason, i dont expect to work 30 hrs/wk lol) anyway, people seem to agree that path can work something like 830-430 with VERY minimal call and are still salaried at like 330 000/yr in Ontario right now with vacation and other benefits? that lifestyle sounds amazing to me (path is also something i think would find to be interesting) so i guess im just wondering if you can see that kind of lifestyle in ophtho? or anything close to it?

 

Thanks :)

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How competitive is urology now? Do people need a lot of research or is doing an elective sufficient?

 

I am wondering how many people feel comfortable applying to urology alone or whether it's really competitive and one should have a backup. And to add to that, isn't it really tough to apply to 2 specialties? Twice the electives, twice the LORs, etc.

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It's quite competitive. Last year the match rate was about 70% for the whole country. And there are very few weak candidates. It's just behind derm, Optho and plastics for competitiveness.

 

Back up is required. I straight up told my home gen surg program I was backing up with them prior to applying. I knew a few people who didn't match.

 

Research helps but is not expected to be amazing. A case study or two should be fine. In urology, more so than other programs due to the small size, likability, work ethic and references count a lot more then marks, ITERS or research.

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what can one do to make themselves competitive for urology in preclerkship? (im still in 2nd yr)

 

Shadow and make connections with staff and residents. You also should try to do a bit of reading if you are shadowing so you look bright and keen. You can also start working on a case report or research project with a staff guy.

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