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Neurol India. 2019 May-Jun;67(3):777-782. doi: 10.4103/0028-3886.263264.

How is neurosurgical residency in India? Results of an anonymized national survey of residents.

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Department of Neurosurgery, All India Institute of Medical Sciences, New Delhi, India.
Department of Neurosurgery, National Institute of Mental Health and Neurosciences, Bengaluru, Karnataka, India.
Department of Neurosurgery, Post Graduate Institute of Medical Education and Research, Chandigarh, India.



To evaluate whether the residency training programs in India are meeting the expectations and aspirations of the present-day trainees.


Residents in training today are the neurosurgeons of tomorrow. Significant resources are dedicated to their training and education. Neurosurgical residency in India-when compared to the rest of the world-is relatively new. However, the structure of the Indian neurosurgical training programs has remained relatively unchanged since they were first introduced. In contrast, the treatment paradigms for neurosurgical conditions have changed rapidly in recent years, as new subspecialties have gained prominence.


An online questionnaire based survey was prepared considering the common themes of neurosurgery residency. The links to the survey were mailed to residents in training all over the country. Results were evaluated after a minimum of 100 responses was collected. The responses were anonymized to ensure free and frank answers to the survey questions.


A total of 104 responses were received from all the major post-graduate training institutes of the country. The period of joining residency ranged from July 2010 to August 2018. Respondents generally agreed on the need for work hour regulations, the importance of history taking and clinical examination and the significance of imaging interpretation as major training goals. The residents were desirous of more hands-on opportunities during operative teaching. Deficiencies were recognized in the exposure to various upcoming subspecialties such as endovascular therapy, radiosurgery, epilepsy surgery, etc. The residents were generally satisfied with the pattern of examination system and showed a clear preference for electronic resources for reading and knowledge acquisition.


The survey highlights the perception of the residents towards the training programs that they are enrolled into. Several lacunae and potential areas of improvement are brought to our attention, which have been necessitated by the recent advancements in technology affecting the neurosurgical treatment paradigms. The training programs need to keep pace with the aspirations and hopes of the residents so that the training experience is mutually fruitful for the trainees and educators. This is important to ensure that the present-day residents can step into their future roles with confidence and preparedness.


Neurosurgery; neurosurgical teaching; residency

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