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J Vasc Surg. 2019 Jun 5. pii: S0741-5214(19)30982-6. doi: 10.1016/j.jvs.2019.03.043. [Epub ahead of print]

Integrated residency is associated with an increase in women among vascular surgery trainees.

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Division of Vascular Surgery, Department of Surgery, University of Washington, Seattle, Wash. Electronic address:
Division of Vascular Surgery, Department of Surgery, University of Washington, Seattle, Wash.



During the past decade, the proportion of women within graduate medical education has increased. Correspondingly, the proportion of women in almost every specialty has increased, including surgical specialties. We sought to evaluate the effect of establishing vascular surgery integrated residencies (VSIRs) on the proportion of women in vascular surgery training programs.


Resident data were obtained from the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) Data Resource Book for the academic years 2007 to 2016. Data were collected on overall ACGME residency numbers as well as on the following surgical subspecialties: vascular, general, thoracic, neurologic, orthopedic, otolaryngologic, and urologic surgery. The number and proportion of women per year in VSIRs and vascular surgery fellowships were compared with those in the other surgical specialties.


During the study period, the proportion of women in ACGME-accredited residency programs increased from 0.41 (n = 43,695/107,851) to 0.44 (n = 57,130/129,720) of residents. Since the advent of the VSIR, the number of trainees within vascular surgery has increased by 56% from 221 to 501 trainees. The proportion of women in vascular surgery training programs has increased from 0.12 (n = 27/221) to 0.33 (n = 164/501) of trainees. This increase during the 9-year study period was greater than in any other surgical subspecialty and greatest within the VSIR. Compared with fellowship training programs, integrated surgical training programs within the same subspecialty had a higher proportion of women, although variability between surgical subspecialties remained notable.


Although it is lower than the proportion of women within all graduate medical education training programs, an increasing proportion of women have entered vascular surgery training during the study period. This appears to be related to the introduction of VSIRs and exceeds the proportion of women entering almost all other surgical subspecialties at a rate of change faster than in all other surgical subspecialties. Further work to understand surgical specialty preferences and choice of careers after training is warranted.


Integrated residency; Vascular surgery; Women


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