CONSIDERING A CAREER IN HAND SURGERY? A Guide for Medical Students
WHAT IS THE REQUIRED RESIDENCY AND FELLOWSHIP TRAINING FOR A HAND SURGEON? Completion of a residency in: ORTHOPEDIC SURGERY(5 YEARS) or PLASTIC SURGERY(5-7 YEARS) or GENERAL SURGERY (5 YEARS) Plus a one year fellowship in: HAND SURGERY
WHAT RESIDENCY TRAINING DO MOST HAND SURGEONS OBTAIN PRIOR TO THEIR HAND FELLOWSHIP? • Residency training for current American Society for Surgery of the Hand Members: • Orthopaedic Surgery 75% • Plastic Surgery 20% • General Surgery 5%
HOW DIFFICULT IS IT TO OBTAIN A HAND SURGERY FELLOWSHIP? While all fellowship positions were filled in the most recent(2005) match, in general, there are more positions than qualified applicants.
WHAT TYPES OF HAND SURGERY ARE LEARNED IN A HAND FELLOWSHIP? • Trauma Surgery of the Hand and Wrist(including replantation) • Congenital Differences • Microvascular Surgery • Arthritis Surgery(Both Rheumatoid and Osteoarthritis) • Reconstructive Wrist Surgery • Peripheral Nerve Surgery
IS THERE BOARD CERTIFICATION IN HAND SURGERY? The Certificate of Added Qualifications in Hand Surgery (CAQHS) is the equivalent of Board Certification in Hand Surgery
HOW DOES A SURGEON OBTAIN A CAQHS? • Board Certification in Orthopaedic Surgery, Plastic Surgery, or General Surgery • Completion of a One Year Fellowship in Hand Surgery • Submission of One Year’s Case List with cases in six of nine core areas • Satisfactory score on the CAQHS exam
HOW DIFFICULT WILL IT BE TO FIND A JOB AS A HAND SURGEON AFTER MY TRAINING? The job market for Hand Surgeons has been stable for many years. There are always many more job openings per year than the number of Hand Surgery Fellows who are completing their training.