40% of early-career sports medicine surgeons' cases are outside the specialty: Study

Claire Wallace -  

Early-career sports medicine physicians do not always start as sports specialists. According to a June 30 report from the Journal of Bone and Joint Surgery, about 40 percent of early-career physicians first perform surgeries outside of the speciality. 

The study, led by researchers from Washington University in St. Louis, analyzed 3,298 board examination applicants who received a sports medicine fellowship between 2003 and 2020. 

The researchers analyzed data from the case lists database for examination candidates. During the six-month case collection period, sports medicine applicants submitted 100.6 cases on average, and only about 58.6 percent were sports medicine cases. 

Applicants had also performed cases in trauma surgery, adult reconstruction and other specialties. 

"The average young surgeon's practice is, realistically, that of a generalist surgeon with an emphasis on sports medicine," the authors wrote in the study.

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