Trauma and Orthopaedic surgery is one of the most competitive surgical subspecialties to get into (getting your first choice job is even trickier).

After completing Foundation Year Training and Core Surgical Training (or attaining the equivalent competencies elsewhere), doctors apply for Higher Specialty Training in Trauma and Orthopaedics and attend the ST3 interviews. There are a number of run through posts available for academics but these are very few and have a separate application process.

Training pathway

During their training T&O registrars will typically rotate through the following sub-specialties during their 6 year training program:

  • General trauma
  • Knee
  • Hip
  • Hand/Wrist
  • Spine
  • Shoulder and elbow
  • Limb reconstruction
  • Tumour and oncology
  • Foot and ankle

A few facts on Trauma and Orthopaedics (taken from the Royal College of Surgeons Census 2011):

  • T&O makes up approximately 30% of the surgical workforce in the UK.
  • The largest sub specialities within T&O are Knee, Hip and Trauma.
  • 2/3 of T&O consultants undertake private work in addition to their NHS workload.
  • T&O is still one of the more male dominated specialities with only 4% of consultants being female (as of 2011).
  • Most consultants do a 1 in 6 to 1 in 8 on call and the majority are not resident out of hours during these on call periods.

Ortho sub specialitieis

To sign up to the OrthopaedicPrep mailing list and be the first to hear about updates for the 2018 ST3 application and interview round, click here.