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  1. #1
    sylvian291 is offline Newbie 510 points
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    The truth about DO's - from a DO

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    After reading so much misinformation about DOs on this board, I felt the need to clarify a few points.

    1) If you care about the initials after your name, go to the Carribean. My opinions on your motives for going into medicine mean nothing. It's your decision.

    2) The supposed "stigma" people speak of. Let me tell you right off the bat that this should not be a reason to avoid the DO path. Generally speaking, I think if you want a shot at a neurosurgery or opthomology MD residency, get an MD. To tell you the truth though, I doubt a foreign MD would stand a very good chance at getting those residencies either but I know there are those hard working exceptions. EM, cards, neuro, int med, family practice, ortho, psych, path, and every other specialty i could think of - if you're interested as a DO and it's competitive, do research over the summers, ace rotations, and ace the complex and/or USMLE and you'll be competitive. With residencies, the only advantage I could think of by going DO over foreign MD is having the osteopathic residencies to choose from in addition to MDs. I will say this though, it is total ** that DO residencies are not open to MDs. Most students disagree with the current setup, but it's the higherups in control, not us. In the end, some X residency might now like DOs, and Y residency might not like foreign MDs. Depends on location a lot as well.

    3) So a few patients will ask me what "DO" stands for. What's the big deal? I explain many years ago there was a difference in philosophies and in modern society the osteopathic field has more or less merged with the allopathic field as far as practice of medicine is concerned (with the exception of the few DOs who do utilize OMM on a regular basis). Is it really the end of the world having to say an extra two sentences? In addition, I've never heard a patient say "I want a real doctor" to me or any of the DO attendings who work right along side the MD attendings. I'm sure somewhere in the world it has happened a few times, but being afraid of that happening is completely irrational. I have a feeling when people say "but I don't want to explain to every patient what a DO is" they're really saying "I want the world to respect me, and I don't feel I will get that respect as a DO." To that I say, by all means go for the foreign MD. Nothing I have to say will change that opinion. One last thing about this subtopic, the comment "nobody knows what a DO is" depends on what part of the country you're in. On the east and west coast, I assure you there are no identity problems with the osteopathic profession. I can't comment on every single other state since I haven't been to most of them. Most of the time, especially in the ER, you introduce yourself as Dr. soandso (regardless of MD or DO) and the patient never knows the initials after your name. The bottom line is you're there to treat them and comfort them. That's all that matters to them.

    4) OMM and such. Some of it I believe is valid, some of it is far fetched and gives our profession a bad name. At this point we can't pick and choose what we learn. The best we can do is pick and choose what we use in practice. For any premeds or MD students who rip on OMM, I'll wager a day's pay (which is $0 for me) they didn't even bother to read about the theories behind some of the more rationally based manipulations. Their friend told them it's **, so they automatically adopt that opinion. Doesn't sound like someone who can think for themself, does it? Read some of the principles on counterstrain techniques, pick up a good medical physiology text, and then present to a DO your reasons as to why you disagree with the validity of the technique. That's the way a rational scientific minded person would act, rather than going on a message board and screaming "it's all crap" over and over with nothing to back it up. As far as courseload is concerned, I don't know how many hours other schools spend covering biochem. All I know is we go through the chapters in Lippencott without skipping any. Yes, we memorized all the enzymes and intermediate products in the Krebs cycle, glycolysis, protein metabolism, etc. From my experience and what I've heard in the past, biochem isn't stressed as much on the COMLEX as the USMLE. Biostats is virtually nonexistant on the COMLEX if my memory serves me correctly.

    5) If you really plan on practicing medicine in certain countries in europe, then yes, a DO isn't accepted in certain countries. How many of you here actually plan on practicing in Europe? I know I sure as hell don't. Therefore, this doesn't play a role in your childish "which is better: MD vs DO" arguments. If you really want to practice in Europe, than MD is your only option, period. It shouldn't matter who gets what residencies or what patients think of DOs. For people who plan on practicing in the US, which is the majority of us I believe, DO practice rights outside of the US is a moot point.

    6) DOs can be licensed IN ALL 50 STATES. There are 5 states that require us to do a 1 year rotating internship year before the actual residency in order to practice in those states. Now, if you're doing an osteopathic residency, that rotating internship year is already built into the residency. If you're doing a dually accredited residency, again, it's already built in. If you're doing an allopathic residency, there are ways to get around that rotating internship year (assuming you didn't want to do it). I couldn't tell you exactly what the loopholes are, but from what I understand pretty much anyone who plays their cards right (says the right thing to the AOA) is able to "get out of" that year, assuming they didn't want to go through with it before applying to the allopathic residency. Again, I stress, THIS IS ONLY FOR 5 OUT OF THE 50 STATES..I think they include West Virginia, Oklahoma, PA, florida I think, and one more. All the other states, you don't need that rotating internship year.

    7) There are many DO students who couldn't get into an MD school. There are some DO students who specifically chose DO over MD. The bottom line is everyone at my school wants to be a doctor.

    8) Philosophy. Treating the patient as a whole. All propaganda in my opinion. Perhaps 80 years ago there was a difference in philosophies. Not anymore.

    9) Neither MDs or DOs will ever have a lack of patients to see. That's the one thing everyone keeps forgetting.

    10) SDN. Don't believe a word you hear on there. The majority of the population is pre meds who have an unlimited amount of time on their hands (compared to those of us in med school) and use that time to argue and state their opinions as fact because their "uncle's cousin's friend" told them how it is.

    In closing, If you're one of the few on this board that wastes their time bashing DOs or trying to find reasons to justify why your carribean MD is better than a DO, why not use that time to put in a little more studying? Cause when it comes time to apply for residencies, there are SOME residencies where you're going to have to have exceptional grades and really stand out, whether your a foreign MD or US DO. The bottom line after all this is that nobody cares about all this MD vs DO crap unless you're a premed and you still think you're going to be at the top of your med school class, on your way to that neurosurgery residency.
    Last edited by sylvian291; 01-18-2007 at 01:24 PM.

  2. #2
    swimguy23's Avatar
    swimguy23 is offline Elite Member 516 points
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    dont you know posting good, useful information on VMD is against TOS?




    Hospitalist 2011-2012
    Hematology/Oncology 2012-2015

    some swimmer from Ct Hidden Content
    the problem with the gene pool is that there are too many lifeguards.....and we have been offering swimmies

  3. #3
    sheikh1's Avatar
    sheikh1 is offline Elite Member
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    Do Med !!!!!!

  4. #4
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    drjohnwebb is offline Senior Member 510 points
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    It doesn't matter if you have a DO or a MD (from a foreign school) there will always be a stigma with both. The advantage of having a MD is, just that patients won't ask you what MD stands for. Post ignorant people will not know what DO stands for, but they won't really care either. I can tell you from being a chirorpactor for the last 5.5 years, people will say.. I like that doctor.. but you know they are not a MD, they are a DO. I have also heard negative comments about IMGs. "you know he couldn't even get into a US school, he went somewhere in the Caribbean".

    However.. I was only the bottom of the pole, I am a chiropractor... so I am not even a "real" doctor. Yet, I make more money than most family medicine docs. I also get just as much respect from MY patients as they give their MD. Patients that don't come to see me, think I don't know what I am talking about..

    As far as manipulation, I can tell you it works and works well. No, it doesn't help everything, but works well for musculoskeletal problems. I get most of my business because most MDs don't know what to do for simple joint and muscle problems.

    Most DOs don't do that much manipulation once they start practicing, they are pretty much identical to MDs.

    Here is some advice... do whatever it is you do and don't worry about your title.. patients will come to you and if you are good at what you do, it won't matter what letters are behind your name.

  5. #5
    aaron1483's Avatar
    aaron1483 is offline Member 510 points
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    This whole "debate" is rediculous anyways. i have worked in a hospital for several years and have met DO's who were in fact opthomologists and anesthesiologists. i have also met Caribbean, Indian, European, heck even Russian MD's who were in surgery, anesthesia, dermatology, etc. My point is, just go to school and worry about one person, YOU. Once you get into a residency or do clinicals, you will see that this whole debate is pointless.

  6. #6
    billydoc's Avatar
    billydoc is offline Senior Member
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    D.O vs Carib MD...

    Most arguements on this topic are just nauseating rants by clueless premeds who are niether one nor another. But it appears that when you get back to the States ppl to whom it may concern automatically assume that you didn't get in U.S (MD or D.O). When I first went to ROSS I did so b/c it took me a little less than one month to get in as opposed to starting the whole primary/secondary/tertiary and quaternary applications. I didn't even know what it means. Why I applied to ROSS and SABA? B/c no MCAT was required (early 2004), and I thought I'll shave a couple of yrs by going now. Unfortunately, such quick and sweet "Victories" worked against me. I'm back to square one three years later, but this time will try U.S first. Due to my age I'll be applying D.O mostly.
    No bastard ever won a war by dying for his country. He won it by making the other poor dumb bastard die for his country.

    George S. Patton Hidden Content

  7. #7
    stateofequilibrium's Avatar
    stateofequilibrium is offline Super Moderator 6105 points
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    Well, while my motives might be questionable in regards to your first point. When you had a goal in mind for a long while, it's hard to change that dream from the MD to DO even if the differences are minute
    Posterior Fornix.

  8. #8
    stateofequilibrium's Avatar
    stateofequilibrium is offline Super Moderator 6105 points
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    Quote Originally Posted by billydoc View Post
    Most arguements on this topic are just nauseating rants by clueless premeds who are niether one nor another. But it appears that when you get back to the States ppl to whom it may concern automatically assume that you didn't get in U.S (MD or D.O). When I first went to ROSS I did so b/c it took me a little less than one month to get in as opposed to starting the whole primary/secondary/tertiary and quaternary applications. I didn't even know what it means. Why I applied to ROSS and SABA? B/c no MCAT was required (early 2004), and I thought I'll shave a couple of yrs by going now. Unfortunately, such quick and sweet "Victories" worked against me. I'm back to square one three years later, but this time will try U.S first. Due to my age I'll be applying D.O mostly.
    Those premeds will figure it out. A lot of my friends who made to MD were also thinking Caribbean route. Those that went to DO were those that tried again to get into a US school after a masters and such. Others, like myself, just gave 'em the bird and went Caribbean.
    Posterior Fornix.

  9. #9
    billydoc's Avatar
    billydoc is offline Senior Member
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    True but...

    Quote Originally Posted by stateofequilibrium View Post
    Well, while my motives might be questionable in regards to your first point. When you had a goal in mind for a long while, it's hard to change that dream from the MD to DO even if the differences are minute
    Hey SOE! Did you really dream of being MD or more so of being a doctor? I mean in a clinical sense of a full-fledged physician, not a Ph.D or some other title that is also a doctor. I know that "doctor" is pretty much synonimous with MD, but if D.O gets you in the same place, and you can stay in the States and have zero licensing issues when you're done..why not D.O?
    No bastard ever won a war by dying for his country. He won it by making the other poor dumb bastard die for his country.

    George S. Patton Hidden Content

  10. #10
    swimguy23's Avatar
    swimguy23 is offline Elite Member 516 points
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    here's my take on it.....unless someone is paying for your entire med school education, telling another person they are wrong for a choice that is equivalent is completely stupid

    Go MD, go DO.....I dont care.
    Hospitalist 2011-2012
    Hematology/Oncology 2012-2015

    some swimmer from Ct Hidden Content
    the problem with the gene pool is that there are too many lifeguards.....and we have been offering swimmies

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