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Physical Medicine and Rehab

Specialty Description

Physical medicine and rehabilitation, also referred to as rehabilitation medicine, is the medical specialty concerned with diagnosing, evaluating, and treating patients with physical disabilities. These disabilities may arise from conditions affecting the musculoskeletal system such as birth defects, neck and back pain, sports injuries, or other painful conditions affecting the limbs, for example carpal tunnel syndrome. Alternatively, the disabilities may result from neurological trauma or disease such as broken hips, spinal cord injury, head injury, or stroke. A physician certified in physical medicine and rehabilitation is often called a physiatrist. Physiatrists often coordinate the services of an interdisciplinary rehabilitation team that may include neurologists, psychiatrists and orthopaedic surgeons as well as allied health care professionals. The physiatrist takes a holistic approach to patient diagnosis by considering the physical and psychological aspects of a patient's condition. A high degree of patient contact and long-term care are common in this field. Physiatrists use medical history, physical examination, x-rays and other imaging techniques, laboratory studies, and other diagnostic tools in patient management. The primary goal of the physiatrist is to achieve maximal restoration of physical, psychological, social, and vocational function through comprehensive rehabilitation. The physiatrist not only treats the person with medications but also treats patients with modalities such as heat, cold, massage, traction, electrical stimulation and biofeedback, as well as selective types of therapeutic exercises. Pain management is often an important part of the physiatrist's role. For diagnosis and evaluation, a physiatrist may include the techniques of electromyography to supplement the standard history, physical, X-ray, and laboratory examinations. The physiatrist has expertise in the appropriate use of therapeutic exercise, prosthetics (artificial limbs), orthotics, and mechanical and electrical devices.

Pathway Director:

Maya Therattil, MD
mtherattil@slrc.org

Lucie Conte
LConte@slrc.org

Drexel Fourth Year Discipline Based Pathway System

PM&R "How to" Guide:

This is a "how to" guide written by a couple of previous graduates.

Drexel Medical Student Interest Group

PM&R Interest Group: ducompmandr@gmail.com
Paul Yerkes: pmy23@drexel.edu, Victor Chun: vsc34@drexel.edu

Work

Patient Profile
5 most frequently encountered conditions
1. Back pain/injury/surgery
2. Stroke
3. Neck pain/injury/surgery
4. Spinal cord injury
5. Arthritis (unspecified)

Lifestyle

Average hours worked per week
45.4


Median Salary
Early career $221,206 -All physicians$ 250,000

Time Requirement

Training consists of a minimum of four years of postgraduate education. Three of these four years must be in a physical medicine and rehabilitation training program. One of these four years of training must be in an ACGME-accredited transitional year program or include six months or more of ACGME-accredited training in family practice, internal medicine, pediatrics, or surgery or any combination of these patient care experiences. The remaining months of this one year may include any combination of accredited specialties or subspecialties. There are 86 physical medicine and rehabilitation residency programs accredited by the ACGME for 2012/2013 offering 367 categorical/advanced positions available to U.S. seniors.

Residency Application and Match Info*

 Characteristics of Entering Residents

U.S. M.D. Graduates

All Other Applicants

First-year residents

All applicants

First-year residents

All applicants

Count (N)

51

360

113

911

USMLE Step 1 score - Mean

216

212

N/A

Mean number of programs applied to in other specialties - Standard deviation

16.0

16.6

N/A

USMLE Step 2 score  -Mean

231

220

N/A

USMLE Step 1 score
Mean number of research experiences

Standard deviation

16.8

19.9

N/A

N/A

2.2

2.1

1.8

1.4

N/A

Mean number of abstracts, presentations, and publications
Mean number of work experiences

3.3

2.7

3.6

4.1

N/A

2.5

3.0

4.4

3.8

N/A

Mean number of volunteer experiences

6.3

6.2

4.5

3.5

Percentage who are AOA members

12.5

5.0

N/A

N/A

Percent who graduated from one of the 40 U.S. medical schools with the highest federally funded research expenditures

27.5

20.8

N/A

AAMC - Careers in Medicine

General Information: http://www.aamc.org/students/cim/
(Log in for more helpful data to include: Personal Characteristics / Match data / Residency Requirements / Workforce Statistics / Compensation)

Source: AACM, Careers in Medicine