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  1. #1
    Macgyver1MD's Avatar
    Macgyver1MD is offline Senior Member 535 points
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    Surgery - St Mary's Hospital in Waterbury CT (Post Rotation Review)

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    Surgery in general is tough in most hospitals from what I heard. This is my impression from St. Mary's Hospital in Waterbury CT.

    It was a VERY TOUGH ROTATION mainly because of the hours we are there. The work load and responsibilities are on par with most rotations, and the scut work is kinda high.

    You start out 4:30am and see your patients on the surgery floor. This can be anywhere from 1 - 6 patients and you have 1.5 hours (4:30 - 6:00am) to seem them and write your progress notes. At 6am your senior resident comes in and you start rounding with your team of about 4 students. 1-2 interns and the senior resident. You present your patients then round on all patients on your team. This can be 10 - 30+ patients in the morning and the team has to be finished by 7:00am to report to the chief resident. After signout to the chief residnet we have breakfast (provided by free meal tickets $2.50). If you have a 7:30 surgery then you might have to skip breakfast and go directly to your case (sucks). There are usually 3-4 attendings doing cases all morning and you ususally follow the same attending all day.

    You will be pimped in the OR from a few attendings, but some don't. You hopefully get out of OR by 12 - 2pm and have some lunch. Then the vitals and labs are to be copied by the students for evening rounds on pre-made sheets. You basically hang around doing really nothing waiting for the senoir residents to come back to the floor and begin rounding. This can be as early as 1-2pm and late as 5-6pm. Rounding can take 1-3 hours depending on the number of patients and the amount of teaching that occurs while rounding. You will be dismissed after signing out to the on-call senior resident after evening rounds. Then you go home from 4 - 8pm depending on when evening rounds finish. Then report next morning 4:30am to start over again.

    You are on call q4 and students do not get post call off. You are required to stay the entire day, but if the floor work is minimal, you might be able to get a few hours sleep after morning rounds since your the last to go into the OR if needed at all. Most of the other studnets cover the OR while the post call people do floor work.

    On weekends you are constantly busy usually. You still report at 4:30am and have to see all your patients on your team, but after signing out after rounds you follow the intern around all day helping them out. Its usually very busy because you also cover all Trauma in the ER in addition to all the surgucal patients and consults.

    On call you usually get avg. 3-4 hours sleep.

    Wednesday is acedemic day and after morning rounds we have to report for lectures all day and lunch is provided by drug reps usually. Then we do evening rounds and are dismissed.

    Average you spend 90 - 110 hours a week there. Teaching is good by residents, awful by most attendings. On call q4 with no post call. Mornings begin at 4:30am and end around 5-6pm after rounds. You get meals provided for free ($2.50 breakfast, $5.00 lunch and dinner).

    All things considered, if you want to be a surgeon this is a good place to learn. If you want a good rotation to learn surgery but not interested in surgery GO SOMEWHERE ELSE. The hours are the worst part. Seriously consider other places for surgery if you don't want to go into surgery. You don't get time to seriously devote to studying due to hours.
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  2. #2
    kemper6036's Avatar
    kemper6036 is offline Ultimate Member 6117 points
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    nice write up....sounds brutal!
    kemper, M.D.
    PGY 1
    Surgery at WFMC
    AUC Alum
    UC Riverside alum

  3. #3
    Student Dystrophy is offline Junior Member 510 points
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    I agree. Nice write up and thanks for the information. One question: What schools do the students come from and about how many total students/residents in the program?

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    PAtoMD is offline Junior Member
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    Quote Originally Posted by Macgyver1 View Post
    Surgery in general is tough in most hospitals from what I heard. This is my impression from St. Mary's Hospital in Waterbury CT.

    It was a VERY TOUGH ROTATION mainly because of the hours we are there. The work load and responsibilities are on par with most rotations, and the scut work is kinda high.

    You start out 4:30am and see your patients on the surgery floor. This can be anywhere from 1 - 6 patients and you have 1.5 hours (4:30 - 6:00am) to seem them and write your progress notes. At 6am your senior resident comes in and you start rounding with your team of about 4 students. 1-2 interns and the senior resident. You present your patients then round on all patients on your team. This can be 10 - 30+ patients in the morning and the team has to be finished by 7:00am to report to the chief resident. After signout to the chief residnet we have breakfast (provided by free meal tickets $2.50). If you have a 7:30 surgery then you might have to skip breakfast and go directly to your case (sucks). There are usually 3-4 attendings doing cases all morning and you ususally follow the same attending all day.

    You will be pimped in the OR from a few attendings, but some don't. You hopefully get out of OR by 12 - 2pm and have some lunch. Then the vitals and labs are to be copied by the students for evening rounds on pre-made sheets. You basically hang around doing really nothing waiting for the senoir residents to come back to the floor and begin rounding. This can be as early as 1-2pm and late as 5-6pm. Rounding can take 1-3 hours depending on the number of patients and the amount of teaching that occurs while rounding. You will be dismissed after signing out to the on-call senior resident after evening rounds. Then you go home from 4 - 8pm depending on when evening rounds finish. Then report next morning 4:30am to start over again.

    You are on call q4 and students do not get post call off. You are required to stay the entire day, but if the floor work is minimal, you might be able to get a few hours sleep after morning rounds since your the last to go into the OR if needed at all. Most of the other studnets cover the OR while the post call people do floor work.

    On weekends you are constantly busy usually. You still report at 4:30am and have to see all your patients on your team, but after signing out after rounds you follow the intern around all day helping them out. Its usually very busy because you also cover all Trauma in the ER in addition to all the surgucal patients and consults.

    On call you usually get avg. 3-4 hours sleep.

    Wednesday is acedemic day and after morning rounds we have to report for lectures all day and lunch is provided by drug reps usually. Then we do evening rounds and are dismissed.

    Average you spend 90 - 110 hours a week there. Teaching is good by residents, awful by most attendings. On call q4 with no post call. Mornings begin at 4:30am and end around 5-6pm after rounds. You get meals provided for free ($2.50 breakfast, $5.00 lunch and dinner).

    All things considered, if you want to be a surgeon this is a good place to learn. If you want a good rotation to learn surgery but not interested in surgery GO SOMEWHERE ELSE. The hours are the worst part. Seriously consider other places for surgery if you don't want to go into surgery. You don't get time to seriously devote to studying due to hours.
    Thank you very much for the above. It was very informative. One question: how many days a week do you work there? Is it a 6 day week or more?.. Thanks again.

  5. #5
    Macgyver1MD's Avatar
    Macgyver1MD is offline Senior Member 535 points
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    Quote Originally Posted by PAtoMD View Post
    Thank you very much for the above. It was very informative. One question: how many days a week do you work there? Is it a 6 day week or more?.. Thanks again.
    Since your q4, you get 1 golden weekend where your off sat and sun. All other weeks of the month it rotates as follows.

    Week 1 - On call Friday night to sat morning 8am
    Week 2 - On call Sat 4:30am to Sun 8am
    Week 3 - On call Sunday 4:30am to Monday 6pm
    Week 4 - Off Both Sat and Sun, on call monday.

    So you see only 1 weekend a month is really free.
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  6. #6
    Macgyver1MD's Avatar
    Macgyver1MD is offline Senior Member 535 points
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    Quote Originally Posted by Student Dystrophy View Post
    I agree. Nice write up and thanks for the information. One question: What schools do the students come from and about how many total students/residents in the program?
    There are about 4 interns (2 prelims, 2 categorical) and 8 other residents i think. There are students from Ross, Saba and AUC. There are also PA students that rotate through too.
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  7. #7
    stateofequilibrium's Avatar
    stateofequilibrium is offline Super Moderator 6105 points
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    Doesn't it suck getting ready to go to work when a lot of people are just getting to bed?
    Posterior Fornix.

  8. #8
    TBL2008 is offline Member 510 points
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    Quote Originally Posted by Macgyver1 View Post
    On call you usually get avg. 3-4 hours sleep.
    You forgot to mention how wonderful the student call room at St. Mary's is!! Share some details.

  9. #9
    nl9569's Avatar
    nl9569 is offline Senior Member 510 points
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    Are there any surgery rotations that will allow me to go in at sayyyy... 10 a.m.? Maybe a 2 hour lunch, Saturdays and Sundays off?
    " I'll fight it, but I won't kill it. Now, what about my dynamite? "

  10. #10
    stateofequilibrium's Avatar
    stateofequilibrium is offline Super Moderator 6105 points
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    3-4 hours of sleep on call during surgery? That's a lot. I get 30 minutes to quickly lay down, curl up into a fetal position and try to unwind before I have go round. Though it cute, one resident saw me and brought a blanket and tucked me in.
    Posterior Fornix.

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