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Entering neurosurgery after CST

Hi! I am interested in neurosurgery, and wanted to ask about the training. Is it possible to go into core surgical training to have an experience with other specialties, complete the 2 years, and then make the final decision to specialty training for neurosurgery? Would the 2 years count as having done the ST1 & 2 years? Thanks!
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Hi, I've moved your thread to the current medical students and doctors forum :smile:

My understanding is since NST is run-through, if you apply after CST you would still need to start in ST1 I think, although I do know there is an ST2 entry point as well (not entirely sure if that's aimed at CSTs or others though).

I'd note that most competitive specialties have as part of the portfolio scoring negative scoring if you are more than a certain number of years past foundation programme and/or don't consider applicants with more than 18 months or similar in that specialty - not sure if NST considers all surgical experience to be part of this.

Your best bet is probably to just do a year "out" after your foundation programme (commonly referred to as an FY3 I think) where you can try and arrange specific posts in the specialties of interest.

I'd also recommend reading this thread on the outlook for neurosurgery in the UK: https://www.thestudentroom.co.uk/showthread.php?t=7219090

The short version is basically, it's not great - there aren't enough consultant posts for neurosurgeons and they aren't creating more, so many of those in training now won't be able to move into a consultant post for years after getting their CCT, due to an error in workforce planning some years ago. They've reduced the number of NST training posts to try and help fix this as well, so it's also even more competitive now.

@itsbrainsurgery may be able to give some more information when around at some point too (although she is not on too often as presumably is busy doing actual neurosurgery! :smile: ).
(edited 1 year ago)

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