Subscribe to RSS
Match Success Trends in United States Ophthalmology Residency Programs
19 October 2015
29 August 2016
25 October 2016 (online)
Background Medical students in the United States are inconsistently exposed to ophthalmology. Not only is this eroding U.S. medical graduates' ability to diagnose and treat ophthalmologic conditions, it may potentially affect interest in the specialty.
Methods To assess medical student's interest in pursuing ophthalmology training, this study sought to evaluate the match rate trend among U.S. medical school seniors applying into a U.S. ophthalmology residency and compare the trend to another traditionally competitive surgical subspecialty, otolaryngology (ENT).
Results From 2009 to 2013, the rate of successful residency matching for ophthalmology increased (12% increase per year in the odds of matching [95% CI: 1.04, 1.20]), while the ENT match rate decreased (7% decrease per year in the odds of matching (95% CI: 0.87–0.99). The ophthalmology match rate increased despite the fact that the expansion in the number of graduating U.S. medical students outpaced the increasing number of ophthalmology and ENT residency positions.
Conclusion The increasing match rate in ophthalmology is surprising and suggests that U.S. medical student's interest in ophthalmology may be waning. Future investigations are needed to determine the reasons behind the increasing match rate and the potential decreasing interest of medical students toward ophthalmology.
This study was supported by an unrestricted grant from the Research to Prevent Blindness, New York, NY. Allison R. Loh is supported by unrestricted departmental funding from the Research to Prevent Blindness (New York, NY) and by grant P30 EY010572 from the National Institutes of Health (Bethesda, MD).
- 1 Newton DA, Grayson MS. Trends in career choice by US medical school graduates. JAMA 2003; 290 (9) 1179-1182
- 2 Dorsey ER, Jarjoura D, Rutecki GW. Influence of controllable lifestyle on recent trends in specialty choice by US medical students. JAMA 2003; 290 (9) 1173-1178
- 3 Schwartz RW, Haley JV, Williams C , et al. The controllable lifestyle factor and students' attitudes about specialty selection. Acad Med 1990; 65 (3) 207-210
- 4 Shah M, Knoch D, Waxman E. The state of ophthalmology medical student education in the United States and Canada, 2012 through 2013. Ophthalmology 2014; 121 (6) 1160-1163
- 5 The San Francisco Matching Program. Ophthalmology Residency Match Report—January 2009–2013. Available at: http://www.sfmatch.org/residency/ophthalmology/about_match/match_report.pdf . Accessed March 4, 2013
- 6 Results and Data: Main Residency Match. NRMP Historical Reports 2009–2013. Available at: http://www.nrmp.org/data/historicalreports.html . Accessed March 4, 2013
- 7 FACTS: Applicants, Matriculants, Enrollment, Graduates, M.D.-Ph.D., and Residency Applicants Data. Available at: https://www.aamc.org/data/facts/ . Accessed March 4, 2013
- 8 Ebell MH. Future salary and US residency fill rate revisited. JAMA 2008; 300 (10) 1131-1132
- 9 Mottow-Lippa L. Ophthalmology in the medical school curriculum: reestablishing our value and effecting change. Ophthalmology 2009; 116 (7) 1235-1236 , 1236.e1
- 10 Patel MS, Katz JT, Volpp KG. Match rates into higher-income, controllable lifestyle specialties for students from highly ranked, research-based medical schools compared with other applicants. J Grad Med Educ 2010; 2 (3) 360-365
- 11 Fabricant PD, Dy CJ, Dare DM, Bostrom MP. A narrative review of surgical resident duty hour limits: where do we go from here?. J Grad Med Educ 2013; 5 (1) 19-24
- 12 Andriole DA, Schechtman KB, Ryan K, Whelan A, Diemer K. How competitive is my surgical specialty?. Am J Surg 2002; 184 (1) 1-5
- 13 Loh AR, Joseph D, Keenan JD, Lietman TM, Naseri A. Predictors of matching in an ophthalmology residency program. Ophthalmology 2013; 120 (4) 865-870
- 14 Yousuf SJ, Jones LS. Ophthalmology Residency Match outcomes for 2011. Ophthalmology 2012; 119 (3) 642-646