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How Bad Is Going Foreign- PsedrishMD or Anyone Else

collegefreak87collegefreak87 306 replies60 threads Junior Member
edited November 2004 in Multiple Degree Programs
My parents really want me to get a "medical degree" from King Edward's Medical College in Pakistan. You can obtain a degree from there in 5 years and it is the most highly regarded public medical school in Pakistan. I really want to be a heart surgeon. Is there any chance in the future that if I do go there I will able to obtain a competitive residency in Surgery and eventually Cardiovascular Surgery.

What do I need on the USMLE steps for this to occur and will I have to come to America during the summer for the short-term medical programs they hold at different medical colleges?

I'm kind of confused about the foreign medical school process. What criteria will a specific hospital look for when looking for residents. Does being a foreign medical graduate of a med school from Pakistan have that much of a bearing on the process if I've scored 99% in the steps and I've done many medical programs in America during the summer.

FInal question: Would me having an outstanding academic reocrd during high school and also being born in America have a positive effect on the process.

I just don't want to regret going outside and not being able to accomplish my goals!
edited November 2004
9 replies
Post edited by collegefreak87 on
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Replies to: How Bad Is Going Foreign- PsedrishMD or Anyone Else

  • PSedrishMDPSedrishMD 601 replies111 threads Member
    It's always a disadvantage to be an FMG....always. A graduate from the lowest ranked U.S. or Canadian school outranks you regardless of exam scores, letters, work experience, etc. Therefore, getting into a super-competitive residency such as cardiovascular surgery is quite an uphill battle. However.....anything is possible. Three factors that would most help you overcome the odds are:
    1) Finding a program in a geographically undesirable place in the U.S.
    2) A connection to such a pgm through a graduate of your Pakistani school currently training there.
    3) Near native English.
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  • wutherlandwutherland 42 replies0 threads Junior Member
    i disagree with PSedrishMD. i've seen plenty of IMGs get into top residency programs in every specialty. yes there are obstacles for IMGs, but they are lessened if that IMG is an american citzen, and if that IMG does lots of clerkship rotations in american hospitals. likely at a minimum you will need to score at or above average on step 1 and 2. having publications will also help your application tremendously. no, high school credentials do not factor into the residency application.
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  • PSedrishMDPSedrishMD 601 replies111 threads Member
    Read my note again: getting into a super-competitive residency such as cardiovascular surgery is quite an uphill battle. However.....anything is possible.

    As a former Chief Resident at a pretty darn good pgm in the states (CWRU), I was the primary person responsible for sorting through residency apps (we had 1200 for around 40 spots), doing prelim interviews and voting on the committee as a full member.

    I promise you FMGs have serious obstacles to overcome almost everywhere. And BTW, you are most correct, U.S. citizens trump true foreigners. This is particularly sad because the American who went to a mediocre off-shore school may get a spot over a foreigner who went to a top pgm in their own country. The net effect of that is to make the foreign-born FMG a 3rd, not a 2nd class citizen.

    By the way, I am an American FMG.
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  • PSedrishMDPSedrishMD 601 replies111 threads Member
    Let me help illustrate the point by providing you with a list of all Neurosurgery matches in the U.S. for 2004:

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  • collegefreak87collegefreak87 306 replies60 threads Junior Member
    PSedrish, from your knowledge and experience, how good of a school is the University of Medicine and Dentistry of New Jersey (UMDNJ). The list you posted shows all the ivy leaguers getting good residency matches. I don't want to be left behind cuz I'm from a "state-sponsored med school".
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  • PSedrishMDPSedrishMD 601 replies111 threads Member
    You'll do fine, but you'll be behind the Ivy League types for any high-prestige residencies (egs. orthopaedics, neurosurgery, ophthalmology, dermatology, cardiovascular surgery, etc.)
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  • bigndudebigndude 1051 replies3 threads Senior Member
    I am also looking to become a Cardio-thoracic surgeon. Does this mean that if I got to UCONN for med school, or University of VT I will not stand a chance against the IVY people?
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  • PSedrishMDPSedrishMD 601 replies111 threads Member
    You stand a chance, but you'll have to stand behind them in line for a slot. Residency directors just love to brag about where they got their residents.
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  • mikespan32mikespan32 145 replies5 threads Junior Member
    i attended UMDNJ's mini-med school classes for h.s. students and some of the residencies that the med students that were helping with the classes got into included UCLA, Cornell, COlumbia, and other top-tier ones.
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