ENT experience in a family medicine clerkship: Is there enough?

Brenda S. OHara, Robert M. Saywell, Terrell W. Zollinger, Christopher P. Smith, Jennifer L. Burba, David M. Stopperich

    Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

    8 Scopus citations


    Background: Curriculum planning is an essential process at any institution of learning. Currently, at Indiana University, a 1-week required otorhinolaryngology clerkship is being considered for removal from the curriculum, and this exposure is planned for integration into other primary care clerkships. A data collection system for patient encounters was created to obtain objective quantitative data about ear, nose, and throat conditions in the family medicine clerkship. Methods: A total of 445 students filled out 56,151 patient encounter forms that contained the diagnoses, patient age, student comfort levels, and student responsibilities. Results: Of the 56,151 encounters, 22.9% involved a condition involving an ear, nose, or throat (ENT) diagnosis, and the overall top-10 diagnoses reflect a typical family practice. Few students reported being given the opportunity to perform procedures. Conclusions: It appears that students are receiving sufficient practice in taking patient histories and performing initial patient physicals for ENT cases and that they see a sufficient number of ENT cases. However, students had more limited opportunity to perform and/or assist with ENT procedures or to be involved with patient education and ENT counseling. The number of ENT cases in the third-year clerkship is sufficient, and the experience is mostly more than adequate. Our study indicates that ENT training is a significant part of the family medicine clerkship, and curriculum integration is possible, though concerns about procedural skills will need to be addressed.

    Original languageEnglish (US)
    Pages (from-to)691-695
    Number of pages5
    JournalFamily medicine
    Issue number10
    StatePublished - Nov 22 2000

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Family Practice

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    OHara, B. S., Saywell, R. M., Zollinger, T. W., Smith, C. P., Burba, J. L., & Stopperich, D. M. (2000). ENT experience in a family medicine clerkship: Is there enough? Family medicine, 32(10), 691-695.