Content of thoracic residency training and its relevance to the practice of medicine

Debra A. Darosa, David A. Fullerton, Irving L. Kron, Mark B. Orringer

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

19 Scopus citations


Background. The Thoracic Surgery Directors Association (TSDA) curriculum book provides learning objectives for a thoracic surgery residency. Our purpose was to evaluate the relevance of these objectives through feedback from recent graduates. Methods. Graduates of multiple TSDA programs were mailed a 50-item questionnaire. Survey items were objectives from the TSDA curriculum book representing six areas of thoracic surgery. Graduates rated each objective for adequacy of instruction and relevance to their current practice on Likert-type scales. Results. Two hundred twenty-eight surveys were included in the analysis. Despite excellent operating room education, graduates across subspecialty lines reported the need for improved education in 'nonoperative' subjects. Graduates practicing cardiac surgery reported little relevance of their general thoracic educational experience. Conversely, graduates practicing general thoracic surgery expressed the need for more/better educational experiences in thoracic oncology and esophageal surgery. Conclusions. Contemporary thoracic surgical education can be improved. A strong need for improvement exists in the teaching of 'nonoperative' subjects. As graduates elect careers in thoracic subspecialties, a need exists to align thoracic surgery educational experiences with ultimate career goals of residents. (C) 2000 by The Society of Thoracic Surgeons.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1321-1326
Number of pages6
JournalAnnals of Thoracic Surgery
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2000

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Surgery
  • Pulmonary and Respiratory Medicine
  • Cardiology and Cardiovascular Medicine


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