For early-career sports medicine candidates, about 40 percent of the procedures they perform may be outside of the sports medicine subspecialty, according to a study published online June 30 in the Journal of Bone & Joint Surgery.
Paul M. Inclan, M.D., from Washington University in St. Louis, and colleagues used the American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery Part-II Case List database to examine practice patterns among oral examination candidates and dual fellowship-trained sports medicine candidates. The analysis included 3,298 applicants indicating completion of a sports medicine fellowship between 2003 and 2020.
The researchers found that on average, sports medicine-trained candidates submitted 100.6 cases for review during the six-month case collection period: 58.6 percent sports medicine/arthroscopy cases; 29.1 percent trauma/general cases; 4.5 percent adult reconstruction cases; and 7.8 percent “other” cases per candidate. The proportion of sports medicine/arthroscopy cases did not change during the study period. Overall, 10.1 percent of individuals indicated a dual fellowship training. During the study period, the number of dual fellowship-trained candidates pursuing additional fellowship training in pediatrics and adult reconstruction increased, while the number of dual fellowship-trained candidates pursuing additional fellowship training in trauma decreased.
“The average young surgeon’s practice is, realistically, that of a generalist surgeon with an emphasis on sports medicine,” the authors write.