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Hand (N Y). 2018 Jan;13(1):103-107. doi: 10.1177/1558944716677537. Epub 2016 Nov 22.

Variability in Resident Operative Hand Experience by Specialty.

Author information

1
1 University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, USA.
2
2 Hospital of the University of Pennsylvania, Philadelphia, USA.

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

Recent attention has sought to standardize hand surgery training in the United States. This study analyzes the variability in operative hand experience for orthopedic and general surgery residents.

METHODS:

Case logs for orthopedic and general surgery residency graduates were obtained from the American Council of Graduate Medical Education (2006-2007 to 2014-2015). Plastic surgery case logs were not available for comparison. Hand surgery case volumes were compared between specialties with parametric tests. Intraspecialty variation in orthopedic surgery was assessed between the bottom and top 10th percentiles in procedure categories.

RESULTS:

Case logs for 9605 general surgery residents and 5911 orthopedic surgery residents were analyzed. Orthopedic surgery residents performed a greater number of hand surgery cases than general surgery residents ( P < .001). Mean total hand experience ranged from 2.5 ± 4 to 2.8 ± 5 procedures for general surgery residents with no reported cases of soft tissue repairs, vascular repairs, and replants. Significant intraspecialty variation existed in orthopedic surgery for all hand procedure categories (range, 3.3-15.0).

CONCLUSIONS:

As the model for hand surgery training evolves, general surgeons may represent an underutilized talent pool to meet the critical demand for hand surgeon specialists. Future research is needed to determine acceptable levels of training variability in hand surgery.

KEYWORDS:

education; fellowship; orthopedic; residency; surgery

PMID:
29291656
PMCID:
PMC5755855
[Available on 2019-01-01]
DOI:
10.1177/1558944716677537
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