Background: Dedicated orthopaedic residency training in the musculoskeletal discipline of foot and ankle is an important contribution to the development of a well-rounded orthopaedic surgeon. Current residency training guidelines are vague and do not require specific experience or proficiency in this discipline. Methods: A one-page questionnaire on commitment to foot and ankle education in American Orthopaedic Surgery residency training programs was completed by all 148 program directors. Results: Eighty of the programs (54.1%) had a single faculty member dedicated to foot and ankle orthopaedics, while 21 (14.2%) did not have a faculty member with a specific interest or commitment to problems related to the foot and ankle. Fifteen programs (10.1%) did not have a committed faculty member, nor did their residents have a clinical rotation dedicated to foot and ankle. Ninety-six programs (64.9%) had at least one clinical rotation dedicated to foot and ankle. Fifty-two (35.1%) did not. Thirty-three (34.7%) of those programs with a dedicated foot and ankle experience assigned residents during at least two periods of their training. Of those programs with a single foot-specific rotation, the most common year for training was in the PGY3 year (27 of 63, 42.9%). Of the 60 months' duration of most orthopaedic residency programs, 39 of 96 (40.6%) programs with a dedicated clinical foot and ankle rotation allocated an average of 12 weeks to foot and ankle. Twenty-six (27.1%) allocated less than 3 total months, and 31 (32.3%) allocated 16 to 24 weeks of dedicated foot and ankle experience. Conclusions: Current residency training in the United States does not universally require a commitment to foot and ankle education. A large number of residency programs do not have a faculty member committed to foot and ankle education, and almost one-third have no time specifically allocated to foot and ankle education.
- Foot and ankle education
- Residency training
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Orthopedics and Sports Medicine