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J Am Coll Surg. 1996 Nov;183(5):425-33.

The longitudinal study of surgical residents, 1993 to 1994.

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  • 1American College of Surgeons, Chicago, IL 60611, USA.



The American College of Surgeons (ACS) has collected comprehensive data about surgical residents for the past 12 years and has published an annual report, the Longitudinal Study of Surgical Residents. In 1994, the ACS and the American Medical Association (AMA) agreed to collaborate in collecting data about surgical residents. We report the analysis of these data for residents enrolled in graduate medical education (GME) in surgery during the 1993 to 1994 academic year.


Data about residents and fellows during the 1993 to 1994 academic year, including the 1994 graduates from 13 surgical specialties, were obtained from the AMA. Through additional mailings and telephone contact by the ACS, data were obtained and verified from each of the 1,500 accredited surgical residency programs. The resulting data set was analyzed to derive a count of residents and fellows and graduates for the 1993 to 1994 academic year. The ACS Resident Masterfile was analyzed separately to compare the 1993 to 1994 results with those from previous years.


The total number of surgical residents enrolled in GME has changed little since 1982. Since 1987, the number of graduates has increased 2.1 percent. More general surgery graduates are enrolling in advanced specialty GME than were enrolling in 1982. The average age of graduates from core residency programs is 33 years, of advanced program graduates is 35 years, and of international medical graduates is 36 years. International medical graduates represent 7.1 percent of all surgical residents and fellows and 5.5 percent of graduates. Women and ethnic minorities are underrepresented in surgical GME.


Surgical GME enrollment has been stable since 1982, and graduates of general surgery residencies are increasingly likely to enroll in advanced specialty residency programs.

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