First Week Of Pediatric Anesthesia – CA-2 ITE Results

I’m finished with my third call shift in my first six days of pediatric anesthesia. Varying levels of fatigue have definitely set in, but this falls short of the profound impact the critically ill pediatric population has had on me. Although I will be pursuing a critical care fellowship, taking care of adults is very different than children. Adults have had the experience of life and its precious moments. These pediatric patients (many of whom are only days old) have not even had a chance! They fall down the abyss of their disease process and many times succumb to it. It’s the heartbreaking reality of working in a pediatric hospital. 🙁 

From an anesthesia standpoint, I’ve definitely been getting better at performing inhalational inductions of general anesthesia, pediatric intubations, line placements, fluid plans, and pain management regimens. I’m still trying to remember all the “mcg/kg” or “mg/kg” dosages of our intravenous medications, but there are plenty of manuals to help!

In other news, I received my CA-2 ITE score report on Monday and improved my percentile to the high 90s. Since these scores don’t automatically get released to fellowship programs, I immediately updated all the coordinators… especially since this score is a little better than my CA-1 ITE score. Who knows if it’ll actually make a difference in the match outcome? It’s worth a shot!

Also, stay tuned for one more piece of exciting news in the coming days!

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  1. Hi Rishi,

    Paul, CA-1 here.
    My ITE-CA1 score is only slightly above the 50th percentile, so nothing impressive.
    I was wondering since you are on the attending side of things: how much do you think the CA-1 ITE score matters(is there a screening score for applications? I read a lot of hearsay online but am not sure… and since CT anesthesia is competitive and say if such screening percentile exists and is say >70% then I know to either not apply at all and save my money on applications or apply with a better CA-2 ITE) and do you personally think sending in your high 90s CA-2 ITE helped you match into CT anesthesia?

    Also, I’m going to try to get on a research project, do a case report or two as a CA-2, but how much of an impact does research and presenting at SCA make for fellowship? If I don’t have something worthy enough to present at SCA in time would that be a huge detriment towards entering the subspecialty?

    Thanks for your time Rishi.

    • Hey Paul! I don’t know if a screening actually exists, but considering that adult cardiothoracic anesthesiology (ACTA) fellowship opens in November, applicants really only have the Basic exam (pass/fail) and CA-1 ITE to show as far as “numbers.” Obviously, this isn’t everything, but I think there’s something to say about stratifying applicants who are otherwise “equal” (consciously or subconsciously) based on objective test scores that all ACTA applicants take. My CA-1 ITE wasn’t that much worse than my CA-2 ITE, so I’m not sure if it made a huge difference in the grand scheme of things.

      I’d be cautious of what you read online though – forums and whatnot are cesspools of opinionated garbage from random people on the Internet. Yes, applying for fellowship (and even DOING a fellowship) has an opportunity cost associated with it… but this is you investing in your career. If it’s something you’re genuinely interested in pursuing, I’d say go for it! With that, research can definitely be helpful, but I don’t think it’s a huge detriment. Just like anything you read on the Internet, take my opinions with a grain of salt and always have a contingency plan.


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